Mammography Services:

Initial Impact of New Federal Law Has Been Positive

HEHS-96-17: Published: Oct 27, 1995. Publicly Released: Oct 27, 1995.

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Pursuant to a legislative requirement, GAO examined whether the Food and Drug Administration's (FDA) implementation of the Mammography Quality Standards Act has had any effect on the: (1) quality of mammography services; and (2) access to such services.

GAO found that: (1) the act has had a positive effect on the quality of mammography services; (2) a uniformed set of standards for mammography services is required in all states; (3) many facilities have had to improve their services in order to become fully certified; (4) annual inspections of mammography facilities help ensure that these facilities are in compliance with the standards set by the American College of Radiology; (5) the number of facilities ceasing mammography services rather than complying with the quality standards is relatively small; and (6) FDA has not closed many of the facilities unable to meet the new certification requirements, but it has given them time to comply with the new quality assurance requirements and to correct the problems found during inspection.

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