Health

Healthy Woman Program

What is the Healthy Woman Program?

The HealthyWoman Program (HWP) is a free breast and cervical cancer early detection program of the Pennsylvania Department of Health. It is funded by the Department of Health and through a grant the Department receives from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

What Services Can I Receive Through the HWP?

Free services for those meeting the eligibility standards include:

  • Clinical breast examination
  • Mammogram
  • Pelvic examination and Pap smear
  • Education on breast self-exam
  • Follow-up diagnostic care for an abnormal result

How do I know if I'm eligible?

Eligibility At A Glance

  • Women between the ages of 40-64
    • Under age 40 if symptomatic
    • Age 65 + if not enrolled in Medicare or only has Medicare Part A
  • Annual family income is at or below 250% of the Federal Poverty Income Guidelines.
    • Current income guidelines

      2014 Federal Poverty Annual Income Guidelines at
      250% of Poverty

      Family Size

      Gross Monthly Income

      Annual Income

      1

      $2,431

      $29,175

      2

      $3,277

      $39,325

      3

      $4123

      $49,475

      4

      $4,969

      $59,625

      5

      $5,815

      $69,775

      6

      $6,660

      $79,925

      7

      $7,506

      $90,075

      8

      $8,352

      $100,225

      Each Additional Person

      $846

      $10,150

      Based on guidelines released via January 22, 2014 Federal Register.
      (Effective February, 1, 2014)

  • Uninsured or underinsured
    • screening(s) not covered, deductible too high

How do I apply for the HealthyWoman Program?

Bethlehem Health Bureau
10 E. Church Street
Bethlehem PA 18018

610-865-7083
Ask for the Healthy Woman Program

What happens if cancer is detected?

If breast or cervical cancer is detected through the HWP, women are able to receive free treatment through the Department of Public Welfare’s Breast and Cervical Cancer Prevention and Treatment Program. *

*There are eligibility guidelines that apply to the Breast and Cervical Cancer Prevention and Treatment Program.
Stay A Healthy Woman

What should I do to stay healthy?


The American Cancer Society Breast Cancer Screening Guidelines recommend:
Women between 40 and 44 have the option to start screening with a mammogram every year. Women 45 to 54 should get mammograms every year.

Women 55 and older can switch to a mammogram every other year, or they can choose to continue yearly mammograms. Screening should continue as long as a woman is in good health and is expected to live 10 more years or longer.

  • Women at increased risk for breast cancer should talk with their physician about the benefits and limitations of starting mammography screening earlier, having additional tests, or having more frequent exams.

Clinical breast exam and breast self-exam
Research has not shown a clear benefit of regular physical breast exams done by either a health professional (clinical breast exams) or by yourself (breast self-exams). There is very little evidence that these tests help find breast cancer early when women also get screening mammograms. Most often when breast cancer is detected because of symptoms (such as a lump), a woman discovers the symptom during usual activities such as bathing or dressing. Women should be familiar with how their breasts normally look and feel and report any changes to a health care provider right away.


American Cancer Society Guidelines for Prevention and Early Detection of Cervical Cancer

  • All women should begin cervical cancer testing (screening) at age 21. Women aged 21 to 29, should have a Pap test every 3 years. HPV testing should not be used for screening in this age group (it may be used as a part of follow-up for an abnormal Pap test).
  • Beginning at age 30, the preferred way to screen is with a Pap test combined with an HPV test every 5 years. This is called co-testing and should continue until age 65.
  • Another reasonable option for women 30 to 65 is to get tested every 3 years with just the Pap test.
  • Women who have had a total hysterectomy (removal of the uterus and cervix) should stop screening (such as Pap tests and HPV tests), unless the hysterectomy was done as a treatment for cervical pre-cancer (or cancer). Women who have had a hysterectomy without removal of the cervix (called a supra-cervical hysterectomy) should continue cervical cancer screening according to the guidelines above.
  • Women who have been vaccinated against HPV should still follow these guidelines. For more info on the ACS guidelines, visit www.cancer.org