Development And Alumni Relations Office

Four female rugby players stand in a row, one holding rugby ball with sponsor's initials - HSL

 24 November 2020

Hospital Services Limited (HSL) and Queen’s Ladies Rugby team have joined forces to launch an exciting new partnership which aims to improve breast cancer awareness amongst young women.

Breast cancer is the leading cancer amongst women under 34 years-old and early detection is key to successful treatment. HSL have launched a partnership with the Queen’s Ladies Rugby team to boost awareness among this group and encourage the practice of self-examination and early detection.

Speaking about the initiative, Graham Stewart, Commercial & Finance Director, Hospital Services Limited said:

“We are proud to be sponsoring Queen's ladies as they fly the flag for breast health awareness amongst their peers.

“As the supplier of the majority of mammography systems in breast screening clinics across the Island of Ireland, many being the state-of-the-art Hologic 3Dimensions™ system, we understand acutely the importance of reliable and frequent breast screening for early and accurate diagnosis in order to increase treatment success rates.”

One of the most common reason cited for patients to not attend a mammogram is misinformation that the procedure is painful. Hologic technologies are designed to make a diagnostic test comfortable and easy, using curved compression paddles that better fit the shape of the breast and offer a more comfortable mammogram experience. The Hologic technologies are also supported by Artificial Intelligence-based products which provide breast density information to the reporting radiologist and a 3D Quorum range of products, designed to make patient reporting easier.

“We are keen to help young women abolish the stigma that mammograms are painful or embarrassing experiences and encourage regular self-examinations. We are happy to join the Ladies Rugby players at Queen’s University to help spread the word and encourage women to attend their scheduled mammograms when more advanced screening becomes appropriate," added Mr Stewart.

Hologic have been at the forefront of breast imaging technology since the launch of the Dimensions 8000 system, in 2008. Since then, numerous clinical studies have been conducted around the world using Hologic’s technology – all demonstrating that tomosynthesis is a fantastic tool in a bid for early breast cancer detection. Some studies found that over 50% of invasive breast cancers were detected when compared to a standard 2D mammogram.

David Chambers, Queen's Rugby Development Officer, commented:

“We are delighted to welcome HSL on board at Queen's Rugby as one of our main sponsors for our Ladies club.

“Our club has been progressing over the past few seasons with credit going to a brilliant student committee who run the club so well and a superb coaching team who have created an environment that allows all players from beginners to competitive develop, leading to the new formation of our 2nd XV last season.”

“Queen's Ladies have been deserving of this support and we are very grateful that HSL identified them as good ambassadors for their company. We are so looking forward to getting back on the field when the time is right to do so – and undoubtedly will be the best looking side in Ulster with our newly branded kit.”

One player has a personal attachment to the sponsorship. Queen's ladies rugby player Megan Stewart has conducted a survey of female students at the University and launched her own awareness initiative, Breast ‘n’ Test, in the past.

Ms Stewart said:

“Upon discovery of a lump in my second year, I was faced with the realisation that many young women, including myself, are undereducated when it comes to what to look for, how to perform self-examinations, and who to contact when something seems abnormal. I am lucky that in my case the growth was benign, but this experience has driven me to encourage breast cancer awareness among young women.”

“When I set up my awareness campaign Breast ‘n’ Test, I conducted a survey of university women and was shocked to learn that 92% of students surveyed had never been to or been offered the chance to visit a clinic that teaches cancer awareness. I also discovered that 78% of students do not know how to properly check themselves, meaning that anomalies that could potentially be caught earlier are perhaps going missed.

“I am delighted that HSL has partnered with the ladies of Queen's Rugby Club to promote breast cancer awareness and look forward to their support as I continue my campaign for increased awareness and ultimately reducing the number of young people facing more advanced breast cancer diagnoses.”

Hospital Services Limited (“HSL”) is a specialist distributor of medical supplies and surgical equipment and consumable products, servicing public and private hospitals across the UK and Ireland.

For more information please contact Brittany Breslin on telephone: +44 (0)7786 964 645 or Julie McCabe on telephone: +44 (0)7801 989 950, at Impact Communications.

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