Athena Breast Health Network

We Are in This Together

Sanford Health is the first clinical partner to work alongside the Athena Breast Health Network, which serves more than 150,000 women receiving breast care at all five University of California medical centers and their affiliates. Athena brings together women, their doctors, specialists and researchers in pursuit of a common goal - better breast health for all women.


A personalized risk profile

Through the Athena Breast Cancer Risk Assessment Program, our patients can discover if they are at risk of developing breast cancer. Every woman who comes to Edith Sanford Breast Center for a mammogram has the opportunity to complete an electronic Athena breast health questionnaire:

  • An invitation to participate is sent when you schedule a screening mammogram.
  • The questionnaire is available up to two weeks after your scheduled visit.
  • All information collected is kept secure and confidential.

With your answers, a personalized breast cancer risk profile is created, identifying your breast cancer risk factors and explaining how you should proceed with future care and screening. The information from this questionnaire helps your doctors deliver the most personalized care throughout your lifetime, incorporating the data into your care plan.


Frequently Asked Questions

How can you participate in the program?

  • Schedule a screening mammogram at a participating Sanford location.
  • An invitation to participate by filling out a health questionnaire will be emailed to you if you have provided your email address.
  • Patients determined to be at elevated risk will get a risk report outlining breast cancer risk factors.
  • Develop a personalized plan with the Athena Breast Health Specialist and your provider.

How will the Edith Sanford Athena Breast Health Program help you and your primary care provider?

  • Determine if you are at an elevated risk of developing breast cancer.
  • Learn how to lower your risk for breast cancer and develop a breast health plan.
  • Access appropriate resources including risk-reduction programs and/or genetic counseling.
  • Receive the latest options in medical care and clinical trials if you are diagnosed.

What happens if you are identified as being at an elevated risk for breast cancer?

  • Both you and your primary care provider will receive a copy of your personalized risk report detailing the identified factors that contribute to your elevated risk.
  • An Athena Breast Health Specialist will be available to schedule a consultation with you in order to discuss that risk profile and address any questions or concerns you may have.
  • After the visit, the Athena Breast Health Specialist will send you and your primary care provider a consultation summarizing the visit and any follow-up recommendations including referrals made to other resources.

What is an Athena Breast Health Specialist?

Athena Breast Health Specialists have special training in breast cancer risk assessment and are part of the clinical team. The Breast Health Specialist works with each patient to help her better understand her risk and connect her with resources available to address risk reduction and appropriate breast cancer screening.

What are the cost and insurance issues related to the Edith Sanford Athena Breast Health Program?

There is no fee for patients to consult with the Athena Breast Health Specialist.

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