BERKELEY HEIGHTS, N.J., March 7, 2019 — Current recommendations for breast cancer screening in average risk women vary. To help determine if a personalized screening schedule based on individual factors is as good as annual mammography, Summit Medical Group (SMG), New Jersey’s premier multispecialty medical group, recently announced its participation in a study intended to improve breast cancer screening guidelines. The Women Informed to Screen Depending on Measures of Risk (WISDOM) Study seeks to ascertain if a personalized, risk-based screening schedule that takes into consideration genetic and other personal factors like family history and breast density, is as effective and safe for women as the current standard of care – annual screening mammograms based on age. SMG will work to engage female patients who are covered by Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Jersey, which earlier this year announced that it was covering the costs for 5,000 of its members to participate in the study.
“Breast cancer screening guidelines have the potential for more personalized care,” said Dr. Priya Jadeja, a breast surgeon at Summit Medical Group and a WISDOM Study physician liaison. “For some women, the individual risk of breast cancer is low and screening every other year may be an option. Studies are necessary to both determine women who are low-risk and to ensure that women of high risk are being screened adequately. With the WISDOM Study, we are striving to revolutionize breast cancer screening by determining if a personalized breast cancer screening schedule based on risk-assessment and biology improves detection, while reducing over-diagnosis and false positive readings. Participation in this study can make a big difference to the health and peace of mind of all women now and for generations to come. That’s very empowering.”
SMG is encouraging eligible patients to take part and be among the first in New Jersey to take part in the WISDOM study, which has a nationwide goal of enrolling 100,000 participants. Currently, over 19,000 women have enrolled in the study, which is free for participants. More information can be found at https://www.summitmedicalgroup.com/wisdomstudy/.
By supporting the development of better screening guidelines, SMG will assist in the creation of better tools to help women avoid unnecessary tests and procedures and lower the total cost of care.
SMG patients between the ages of 40 and 74 who are members of Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Jersey, and who have not had a mastectomy, breast cancer or ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS) may qualify for the study. Interested individuals can learn more about the WISDOM Study and their eligibility to participate by visiting www.wisdomstudy.org.
Participants can have their screenings done at Summit Medical Group or other facilities that participate in Horizon BCBSNJ’s network. Horizon BCBSNJ is an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association.
Funded with support from the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, the Study is being conducted by The Athena Breast Health Network, a group of breast cancer experts, health care providers, researchers, and patient advocates at five University of California Medical Centers.
SMG Breast Cancer Screening Recommendations
Based on currently available evidence, Summit Medical Group recommends that women ages 50-75 at average risk get a screening mammogram at least every 2 years. Women ages 40-49, those at increased risk for cancer, and those who are considering annual mammograms should discuss their risk factors and personal preference with their provider to establish an individualized screening plan.
About Summit Medical Group
With roots tracing back to 1919 when founders Drs. William Lawrence and Maynard Bensley first started to practice together, Summit Medical Group is the largest independent multispecialty medical group in the U.S. that is owned, governed and led by physicians. Summit Medical Group offers more than 80 locations in seven northern New Jersey counties. Summit Medical Group provides over 900 practitioners who cover more than 80 medical specialties and services, and who are focused on a patient-centered and coordinated approach to care. The Summit Medical Group health care model provides patients with more convenient and affordable care for every stage of life – from birth and pediatrics to geriatrics – with all ancillary services under one roof, including wellness, cancer care, disease management, surgical services, behavioral health and chronic conditions. For more information, visit www.summitmedicalgroup.com.