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From Screening to Recovery: North Oaks Breast Care Program Guides the Way

From Screening to Recovery: North Oaks Breast Care Program Guides the Way

North Oaks new Breast Care Program aims to encourage screening and help patients navigate the challenges of diagnosis, treatment, recovery and support if cancer is discovered.

“Our goal is to shift the dynamic of breast cancer care, offering a patient-centric approach that ensures women and men receive the support they need every step of the way."
- Sarah Mitchell, Service Line Vice President

Comprehensive Care Pathway

At the heart of the North Oaks Breast Care Program is a commitment to closing the gaps in care, starting with health education and screening and continuing regardless of outcome.

Early Detection: Any month of the year is the right time to schedule an annual mammogram. Early detection is crucial in the fight against breast cancer, and this program emphasizes the importance of regular screenings. Our innovative tools, including advanced breast imaging exams like 3D mammography (digital breast Tomosynthesis), help detect and diagnose breast cancer earlier when it's more treatable.

“3D mammograms allow radiologists to see breast tissue details more clearly, potentially uncovering breast cancer hidden by overlying breast tissue,” explains Regina Scott, Vice President of Diagnostics.

“Our high-performance 3D mammography unit uses advanced cancer detection technology combined with Artificial Intelligence (AI), designed for comfort and convenience."

Benefits of 3D mammograms paired with Profound AITM include:

  • More accurate results
  • Faster diagnosis
  • Improved cancer detection
  • Fewer unnecessary callbacks
  • Fewer false-positives
  • Comfort-focused design

Patient Navigation: When a mammogram is normal, our team will be the first to celebrate with our patient. But if the mammogram does identify an abnormality, our patient navigators will kick into high gear. Their purpose is to guide patients through the maze of appointments, tests, and decisions, ensuring a seamless and swift transition to the appropriate specialists.

Expert Medical Team: The North Oaks Breast Care Program features a highly specialized medical team dedicated to providing exceptional care:

  • Breast Imaging Radiologists: Experts in interpreting mammograms and advanced breast imaging techniques, ensuring early detection.
  • Surgeons: Skilled in various breast cancer interventions and reconstructive surgeries, working closely with patients to tailor treatment plans.
  • Oncologists: Specializing in breast cancer treatment, offering the latest medical advancements, including chemotherapy and targeted therapies.

Through collaboration, these providers ensure patients receive expert care, personalized treatment plans, and support throughout their breast cancer journey.

Biopsy and Beyond: The program model has been hardwired to expedite care and reduce the anxiety that waiting for answers can cause. Regardless of the biopsy outcome, North Oaks’ commitment to closing the gaps in care continues. The program’s care navigators work to connect patients with a general surgeon within one week of receiving an abnormal mammogram or ultrasound, often achieving this goal in just a few days. Biopsies also are performed within a week.

If cancer is confirmed, the program offers a clear pathway for patients. This includes breast MRI, genetic testing, lumpectomy, partial/segmental/full mastectomy, reconstructive surgery, chemotherapy, radiation therapy, rehabilitation services, support groups and all other necessary interventions and treatments.

Local Rehabilitative Support: Rehabilitation Services are integral to recovery. Physical and occupational therapists – including certified lymphedema therapists – help patients regain strength, function and confidence during recovery.

Resources and Support: Essential to every aspect of the journey is support. Access to national and local resources, as well as patient and caregiver support groups, help patients and their families cope with the emotional and practical challenges that come with a cancer diagnosis. Taking support a step further, North Oaks’ registered dietitians offer nutrition counseling to patients to help them leverage the healing power of food. The Breast Care Program team also partners with Krewe Da Cha Chas, a local non-profit organization devoted to providing a local support network for breast cancer fighters and survivors. Because no one should have to fight cancer alone, North Oaks has assembled a core team of “survivor support volunteers,” comprised of North Oaks staff and community members who are available to share one-on-one guidance, encouragement and insights on what to expect every step of the way with newly diagnosed patients.

Patient-Centric and Community-Driven: Simply put, the North Oaks Breast Care Program places the patient at the center of its mission.

“Our program raises the bar in breast care by recognizing every patient as an individual with unique needs. Regardless of socioeconomic resources, we believe everyone deserves access to exceptional breast care within the supportive environment of their own community,” Mitchell explains.

Meet Beth Carver, a remarkable breast cancer survivor and a dedicated member of our North Oaks family for 23 years. Her journey is a testament to the importance of regular mammograms and the steady support of loved ones. Visit to learn more about Beth's story and learn how you can take control of your health with the North Oaks Breast Care Program.