Maine Breast and Cervical Health Program - About the Maine Breast and Cervical Health Program

The Problem in Maine

  • Each year approximately 980 women are diagnosed with breast cancer and 55 with cervical cancer. Source: American Cancer Society, Retrieved December 12, 2007, from
  • Approximately 190 women die from breast cancer and 15 from cervical cancer annually. Source: American Cancer Society, Retrieved December 12, 2007, from
  • It is estimated that 30,224 women are in need of breast and cervical cancer screening services annually, based on health insurance coverage and income. Source: Maine Breast & Cervical Health Program
  • If women age 50 and older obtain regular screening for breast cancer, up to 32% of breast cancer deaths could be prevented. Virtually all of cervical cancer deaths could be prevented through regular screening. Source: U.S. Department of Health & Human Resources, Agency For Healthcare Research and Quality, Retrieved December 12, 2007, from

Program Goals

  • To reduce breast and cervical cancer morbidity and mortality through early detection, public and professional education, quality assurance and surveillance.
  • To provide breast and cervical cancer screening and follow-up services to low-income Maine women.
  • To provide public education to encourage all Maine women to obtain regular breast and cervical cancer screening.
  • To provide professional education in breast and cervical cancer control issues.
  • To provide assistance and support to health professionals and health care organizations to assure the quality of services delivered.
  • To implement surveillance and evaluation systems to monitor the status of the diseases and progress of the program.
  • To link women diagnosed with breast or cervical cancer to MaineCare for treatment.

Priority Populations

The priority population for the MBCHP is women between the ages of 50-64 who are low-income up to 250% of federal poverty level, who have not been screened in the past year, and who have no other source of health care reimbursement, such as insurance. Special emphasis is on never or rarely screened, lesbians, Native Americans, and other racial, ethnic, and cultural minorities.

Program Activities

The program funds over 300 sites in the state to provide screening and diagnostic services and community-based public education and support services. Primary care sites provide clinical breast exams, pelvic exams, and Pap tests, refer women for mammography, and coordinate services for participating women. Mammography facilities provide screening and diagnostic mammograms. Laboratories provide cytology and pathology services. Other health care professionals provide diagnostic services on referral, such as colposcopy and breast biopsies. Community partnerships funded by the program provide public education, peer education programs, transportation and other support services.

Funding Sources

The program is funded through a cooperative agreement with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), under the National Breast and Cervical Cancer Early Detection Program. The cooperative agreement provides approximately $1.7 million per year from CDC, which is matched with funding from the state of Maine, as well as in-kind support on a $1 (state) for every $3 (federal) basis.

Downloadable MBCHP One Page Information Sheet
MBCHP Information Sheet (pdf*)

For information about the program call:

Local/Outside of Maine: 1-207-287-8068
Maine Toll Free: 1-800-350-5180
TTY: ( New TTY Procedures) Maine Relay 711 (Deaf/Hard of Hearing)