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Sth Auckland patients get new breast biopsy chair

South Auckland patients & staff delighted with new breast biopsy chair

A new $18,000 chair that helps correctly position women of all shapes and sizes during breast biopsies is receiving rave reviews.

Donated by Breast Cancer Foundation NZ (BCFNZ), the chair is being used for biopsy procedures at BreastScreen Counties Manukau. Its adjustable shoulder segments and headrest offer positioning flexibility, so patients are more comfortable and results more accurate.

BCFNZ’s chief executive Evangelia Henderson says, “This has added a second chair at the Manukau SuperClinic, so women aren’t having to wait as long for procedures. Also, the new chair can accommodate heavier people than the old one, meaning everyone is now catered for.”

BreastScreen Counties Manukau clinicians are thrilled with the new chair. Charge medical radiation technologist Samantha Jones says, “Our patients here in South Auckland come in all shapes and sizes. We had reached the point where our existing chair would just not accommodate our larger ladies.

“The benefits are ease of movement with the chair and less risk of injury for the staff. Staff can be confident that the chair will not tip or move when a lady gets on or off. Also, the chair looks a lot less intimidating than our old one. We will hopefully reduce the number of repeat biopsies due to movement,” says Samantha.

“I estimate at least 30 ladies a week will benefit from having this splendid new equipment.”

Medical radiation technologist Rene Davidse says, “The chair is really ergonomic, easy to use and very comfortable for the ladies.”

Lead radiologist Dr Melanie Rees says, “I used it for the first time today on a lady I was expecting to be a technically challenging second-attempt biopsy. The procedure was a comparative breeze. The lady volunteered that it was much more comfortable. The chair is easily manoeuvrable, comfortable and helps us position in biopsies with ease. It is a very generous, thoughtful and practical donation to the women of South Auckland.”

Around 350 people are diagnosed with breast cancer in Counties Manukau every year. More than 3,300 women and around 25 men are diagnosed with breast cancer in New Zealand each year, and over 600 Kiwis die.

May is Pink Ribbon Breakfast month. Go to for more information or to register a fundraising event.

About BCFNZ:

Breast Cancer Foundation NZ is a not-for-profit organisation that depends on donations and fundraising for its work in breast cancer education and awareness, medical research and training grants, advocacy, and supporting women with breast cancer. BCFNZ’s programmes are evidence-based, overseen by its medical advisory committee.

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