Breast Cancer Screening: How to Close the Referral Loop


A large hospital partnered with Actium on its breast cancer awareness campaigns to improve patient outcomes and drive revenue growth.

While breast cancer screening is critical to saving lives, it comes with its share of operational challenges to actually ensure women receive the screening. The process is handled and performed by specialty care and often involves a referral. Secondly, the patients will often need assistance in scheduling a separate appointment with Radiology. For women, getting a mammography is often inconvenient at best. In the worst case scenario, they may forego the screening “just this year” which could pose a significant risk. Closing the loop from referral to documented results requires guidance from the health system to help these patients along this care journey. 

About 1 in 8 U.S. women (about 12%) will develop invasive breast cancer over the course of her lifetime. To combat and address this disease head on, providers have relied on breast cancer awareness campaigns to educate their patients on prevention and screenings to help reduce the risk.  Mammograms are a preemptive measure covered by most insurance companies and are available for women 40 years and older. Although a referral order from a physician is not required at most imaging centers, many women leave their annual PCP or OB/GYN appointment with a referral in hand (or electronically submitted) for their screening.  

Breast cancer awareness month  is a perfect opportunity for marketing and patient acquisition teams to influence and drive the patient’s behavior to take the next step and schedule the actual mammogram screening.  Without timely and relevant patient engagement, a patient typically forgets to follow up and schedule a mammogram. The paper referral sits by the phone as a reminder, with the onus on the patient to proactively take action and call. In most cases, unfortunately, this results in a missed opportunity for both patient and the care team. 

To address this critical care gap, a large hospital partnered with Actium Health to design a patient engagement strategy to take advantage of this short window of opportunity. Leveraging various data sources and optimizing outreach campaigns, they saw mammogram scheduling conversion rates of 92% amongst the women contacted within approximately a 7 day window. In addition, a majority of the mammograms were done at the hospital’s breast health imaging center which led to service line revenue growth. Most importantly, of course, was maximizing the patient outcome.

To learn more about how you can partner with Actium Health on your breast cancer awareness campaigns to improve patient outcomes and drive revenue growth, contact us for a free demo today.