Breast Screening

City, Sandwell and Walsall Breast Screening Service is part of the NHS National Breast Screening Programme and provides free, routine screening once every three years to all women aged 50 up to their 71st birthday in North, East and West Birmingham, Sandwell and Walsall.

The service has five mobile breast screening vans which move around the areas served so that women can be screened closer to home.

Breast screening involves having an X-ray (mammogram) of each breast, which is taken while carefully compressing the breast. The mammogram looks for breast cancers before they produce any signs or symptoms, when they are too small to be seen or felt.


Patients will automatically be sent a letter every three years inviting them to come for a screening as long as they are registered with a GP. They will receive their first invitation for breast screening before their 53rd birthday.

If they are over 71 years of age they will no longer be automatically invited for screening but it is still free and available; they will just need to call the breast screening office to arrange an appointment.

If it has been over three years since the last screening appointment or a patient thinks they are due for screening please contact us.

The service also works with the local learning disability health teams. If patients have a learning disability and would like support with any health issues they can contact them.

Where do I need to go for breast screening?

Your invitation letter will tell you the location, date and time of your appointment. Screening usually takes place on one of our mobile screening units in a location within the community and occasionally at the breast unit at the Birmingham Treatment Centre, City Hospital or Walsall Manor Hospital. Only women work on the mobile screening unit and if you are accompanied by a man he will be asked to wait outside.

If you have any mobility problems please let us know before your appointment as we may need to arrange a different location for you to attend that is more easily accessible.

What happens during the appointment?

During your appointment you will have an X-ray (mammogram) of each breast to look for any changes in the breast tissue, which may indicate cancers that have not yet caused any signs or symptoms.

What happens after the appointment?

Your mammogram will be examined by two specialist film readers and the result will be sent to your home address and to your GP within three weeks.

It is very important to be breast aware between screenings, as changes can happen at any time. If you notice any changes to your breasts that are not normal for you, get them checked by your GP.

Cancelling, re-arranging and not attending appointments

If you are not able to attend the appointment you have been given please contact the breast screening office to rearrange. If you do not want to attend for breast screening please contact us to cancel; if you change your mind later you can contact us again for an appointment.

If you miss your screening appointment you will be sent a letter offering you the chance to book another appointment. If you choose not to rebook another appointment you will be routinely invited again in three years time. In the meantime if you do change your mind you can contact us to re-arrange your screening.

If you recently attended for screening elsewhere and have now been sent an invitation for screening in your new area you can still attend as long as your screening appointment was more than six months ago.

Useful websites

Information about breast screening:
NHS Breast Screening Programme

Information about checking your breasts and breast cancer:
Breast Cancer Care


City, Sandwell and Walsall Breast Screening Service

Telephone: 0121 507 4967 option 1
(Monday – Friday, 8am – 5pm)


Learning disability teams

  • Birmingham
    Tel: 0121 466700
  • Sandwell
    Tel: 0121 543 4287
  • Walsall
    Tel: 01922 658800

For more information about disabled access for this service

Click here