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Annie Simmonds from Epping is urging women not to ignore screening letters from the hospital
A woman diagnosed with cancer is urging people in the district not to ignore the very same letter which saved her life.
Annie Simmonds has issued a warning to women who will soon receive an invitation for a mammogram at St Margaret’s Hospital in Epping.
The 64-year old almost decided against going to her appointment, not knowing that she already had the disease.
Luckily, in August 2011 she decided it was better to be safe than sorry.
She said: “We were having work done on our house and it was a while before we went through the post.
“I saw that I had missed my appointment and called them. They saw me four days later.
“When they told me that I had cancer I was in so much shock. My son came home from Afghanistan and I had to tell him. He knows that there is a history of terminal cancer in our family.”
Mrs Simmonds’ appointment meant that they caught the cancer early.
After enduring an operation, radiotherapy treatment and months of appointments she went into remission.
Now, Mrs Simmonds of Barnfield in Epping is telling women that they must make the time for the appointment.
She also says that breast unit in Epping, which was recently awarded for high standards, was “remarkable” throughout her illness.
She said: “I cannot thank them enough at St Margaret’s. Through the whole process they have supported me. I went into my operation feeling safe.
“From the hospital to Macmillan there is so much support for cancer patients, I never felt alone.
“Women must not ignore those letters. I probably wouldn’t be here if I had.”
Six thousand women in Epping Forest will receive a letter from the hospital as they make a push for screening in October Breast Awareness Month.
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