Free breast screens may lead to more overdiagnosis: expert

The target age range for free breast screening has been extended by five years – from women aged 50–69 to women aged 50–74 – through a $55.7 million investment over the next four years.

More than 220,000 additional screening services will be delivered over that period and, from 2016–17, an estimated 600 additional breast cancers could be detected each year, according to Health Minister Tanya Plibersek, who made the pre-budget announcement.

“Age is the biggest breast cancer risk factor, and currently one in 11 Australian women will be diagnosed with breast cancer before the age of