Expert Pitch
University of California San Diego Health

COVID-19 Impacted Breast Cancer Screening, Health Disparities Continue

UC San Diego Health experts available to discuss these and related topics during Breast Cancer Awareness Month 

Mammography is the most effective tool for screening breast cancer, using X-rays to identify abnormalities in breast tissues. Although health care facilities saw a decline in these screenings at the start of the pandemic, screening rates have returned to more typical levels at UC San Diego Health.

“It is critical that women continue to see their doctors for yearly breast screening and inform their health care providers of physical changes they have observed,” said Anne Wallace, MD, director of the Comprehensive Breast Health Clinic at UC San Diego Health.

“UC San Diego Health has implemented stringent infection-prevention protocols and systems — including universal masking, health screening protocols and physical distancing practices — to keep patients and team members safe. Don’t wait to see your doctor. Mammograms can find early signs of breast cancer when it is most treatable.”

The National Cancer Institute estimates 279,480 women will be diagnosed with breast cancer in 2020. Although 1 in 8 women will be diagnosed with breast cancer in their lifetime, 90 percent of patients with breast cancer survive five years or longer due to early detection and treatment. Despite a high survival rate, 42,000 women will die from the disease this year.

According to a recent report by the American Association for Cancer Research, breast cancer is the most commonly diagnosed cancer among African American women, with 33,840 new cases estimated to have been diagnosed in 2019.

“White women are more likely to be diagnosed with breast cancer, but African American women face a disproportionately high mortality rate. Compared to white women, African American women are 39 percent more likely to die from breast cancer,” said Angelique E. Richardson, MD, PhD, a medical oncologist at UC San Diego Health who specializes in breast cancer treatment and whose research involves cancer health disparities.

“One of the factors contributing to this disparity is that African American women are less likely to undergo routine breast screenings and are being diagnosed at later stages of disease. We need to understand why these disparities exist and work to improve or eliminate them.”

Additional information about breast cancer:

  • The Women Informed to Screen Depending on Measures of Risk (WISDOM) clinical trial at UC San Diego Health aims to uncover whether annual mammograms are the best way to screen for breast cancer or whether a personalized approach is best; information is available at
  • Breast cancer is the second leading cause of cancer death in women behind lung cancer
  • There are more than 3.5 million breast cancer survivors in the United States
  • Men can also develop breast cancer, although it is much less common

Established in 1978, Moores Cancer Center at UC San Diego Health is San Diego’s only National Cancer Institute-designated Comprehensive Cancer Center. According to the 2020-2021 U.S. News & World Report, UC San Diego Health cancer services ranked among the top in the nation.

Wallace, Richardson and other oncologists at UC San Diego Health are available throughout October to discuss breast cancer risk, detection and treatment.

Filters close

Showing results

110 of 3765
Released: 23-Oct-2020 4:55 PM EDT
Woman recovering from COVID-19 shares experience as monoclonal antibody clinical trial participant
University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston

When Christina Loville tested positive for the coronavirus, she was terrified. She decided to channel her fear into researching COVID-19 treatments, where she discovered a local clinical trial led by experts at The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth).

Released: 23-Oct-2020 4:30 PM EDT
"Third spike" in COVID-19 cases, plus the vaccine trials: Live Expert Panel for October 29, 3PM EDT

"Third spike" in COVID-19 cases, plus the vaccine trials: Live Expert Panel for October 29, 3PM EDT

Released: 23-Oct-2020 1:50 PM EDT
Are we really “rounding the corner" when it comes the coronavirus pandemic?

“We’re rounding the turn,” Trump said during the debate. This implies a meaningful improvement. We rate this claim as false. On that very same day the U.S. recorded 77,000 new cases, according to NBC News. This tops the previous high that had been set in July. We may be learning to "live with it," as Trump mentioned, but this is not an improvement.

Newswise: 246719_web.jpg
Released: 23-Oct-2020 12:50 PM EDT
NRL researchers evaluate ultraviolet sources, combat COVID-19
United States Naval Research Laboratory

U.S. Naval Research Laboratory researchers evaluated commercial ultraviolet (UV) sources for viral disinfection to combat COVID-19 on land and at sea, and established a dedicated UV characterization lab in five days to ensure safe introduction and effective operation of UV sources across the Fleet.

Released: 23-Oct-2020 12:05 PM EDT
COVID-19 anxiety linked to body image issues
Anglia Ruskin University

A new study has found that anxiety and stress directly linked to COVID-19 could be causing a number of body image issues amongst women and men.

Newswise: 246747_web.jpg
Released: 23-Oct-2020 11:45 AM EDT
Eliminating COVID-19: What the world can learn from NZ and Taiwan
University of Otago

Both Taiwan and New Zealand have successfully eliminated COVID-19 with world-leading pandemic responses. By taking a particularly proactive approach, Taiwan's response was probably the most effective and least disruptive of any country's, researchers say.

Released: 23-Oct-2020 11:00 AM EDT
Healthcare's earthquake: Lessons from COVID-19
Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center

The COVID-19 pandemic has fundamentally disrupted U.S. healthcare organizations.

Released: 23-Oct-2020 10:50 AM EDT
COVID-19 lockdown reduced mental health, sleep, exercise
Pennington Biomedical Research Center

A first-of-its-kind global survey shows the initial phase of the COVID-19 lockdown dramatically altered our personal habits, largely for the worse.

Released: 23-Oct-2020 10:45 AM EDT
New Data on Increasing Cloth Mask Effectiveness
Society for Risk Analysis (SRA)

A new study published in Risk Analysis, “Reinventing cloth masks in the face of pandemics,” by Stephen Salter, P.Eng., describes how Effective Fiber Mask Programs (EFMPs) can help communities find a balance between the economy and curbing community spread.

Showing results

110 of 3765