“La Carovana della Prevenzione”: An ambulant Prevention Campaign
15 March 2019
“La Carovana della Prevenzione”: An ambulant Prevention Campaign

“If people do not have access to the health care system, then bring it to them”: that could be a motto for Susan G. Komen Italia. For the second consecutive year, the national itinerant programme for women’s health in Italy, “La Carovana della Prevezione” – in English “The Prevention Caravan” – hits the road to provide free medical services to women in poor socio-economic conditions. Started at the beginning of the Breast Cancer Awareness Month October, the Caravan second’s giro will, once more, travel across Italy to promote prevention and raise awareness among the younger generation.

Launched in 2017 at the start of the Breast Cancer Awareness Month October, the Carovana aims at bringing medical services closer to women living in poor socio-economic conditions. More specifically, it provides specialised consultations and preventive medical exams outside the nerve centre of cities, in suburbs, rural areas, and vulnerable areas; and in specific places, such as immigrant reception centres, convents, or retirement homes.

During its first giro, the Carovana made 150 stops in 13 regions offering free medical services to over 7,000 women. For its second edition, it already stopped in 30 places in 8 Italian regions, and continues to travel across the country to provide as much medical care as possible to women in 2019 as well.

Three Units for Women’s Health

The Carovana consist of three mobile units with specialised medical staff and Susan G. Komen volunteers.

  • The first mobile units focuses on breast prevention. With two consultation rooms and the latest technology tools, this unit provides medical examinations and diagnostics of early breast tumours.
  • The second unit is a mobile unit for secondary gynaecologic prevention, where other female tumour can be diagnosed early.
  • The last mobile unit offers preventive medical services to diagnose other kind of diseases, as thyroid cancer, melanoma or skin cancer, and medical advice to adopt a healthier life style.

Not only does the Caravan provides different medical services, but it also wants to raise awareness to the importance of physical activities, sports, and a healthy diet among young people. No wonder activities are being organised in schools in the regions the Caravan visits.

A Project to Fight against Health Care Gaps

This initiative is the fruit of a collaboration between the organisation Susan G. Komen Italia, member of Think Pink Europe, and the Fondazione Policlinico Universitario A. Gemilli. While the fight against poverty and for equal access to health care have become essential nowadays, particularly in Europe, some people still live in poor living conditions and do not have proper access to health services, creating health care gaps among European people. Two recent studies showed that women living in poverty and in conditions of social exclusion tend to participate less in preventive medical exams, such as mammography, and put aside their health in favour of their family’s well-being or other primary needs.

Riccardo Masetti, president of Susan G. Komen Italia and co-chairman of Think Pink Europe, underlines the importance of prevention: “Knowing early about the existence of a tumour gives better chance of recovery – 90 % as far as breast cancer is concerned – with less invasive treatments”. He adds: “The objective of the Caravan is to diffuse the culture of prevention. Thanks to our three mobile unites, we offer the possibility to take care of their health and to get free preventive and specialised medical exams, in particular to women living in poor social or economic conditions, who in other case would not have that.”

 

For further information on the Carovana della Prevenzione in Italy or to support the project, visit the Susan G. Komen Italia website.