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By Azucena Mazón and Shandra Keesecker-Rivero
For the past 6 years, and generally in the Fall, the Beltrones Association has brought women’s health care possibilities to neighborhoods across Puerto Peñasco via a mobile health unit. In late November / early December of 2015, the Beltrones Association mobile was at it again and now has sights on offering the service twice a year, possibly in the Spring or early Summer.
In late February, Oscar Palacio Soto of the Beltrones Association reported in the Fall of 2015 the mobile unit saw just over 300 women in all, and conducted 174 mammograms and 129 cervical pap exams. Of these, he detailed, there was only 1 case where a slight anomaly was detected. The Association was pleased that approximately 40% of the women seen in 2015 were returning patients, which points to increased awareness among women within the community as to caring for their health in remaining alert to early detection exams. Palacio noted that just two years ago, the Association detected 5 anomalies, 2 of which were well advanced cases.
Along with the Beltrones campaigns, the local chapter of the George Papanicolau Association also provides awareness campaigns and monthly care for women of limited means in the community. The clinic, which is supported by volunteers, is located behind the General Hospital (across from the new Dialysis Center) and offers free medical services as needed.
Free pap exams are also offered at the Health Center located at Simón Morua and Juan de la Barrera in the center of town, specifically for women who do not have any other form of medical service.
Numerous individual clinics in town also offer pap exams at a cost of around 800-1000 pesos (approximately $50 – $60 US). Mammogram services are also available in town at a cost of around 500-600 pesos per visit (approximately $30 – $35 US).