Pours for a Purpose Raises $245,000 for Mobile Mammography Unit

The community of Bemidji recently came together in philanthropy to help launch the region’s first-ever 3D Mobile Mammography Unit, an effort to bring lifesaving screenings and breast cancer awareness to women in surrounding communities.


Pours for a Purpose, held on Friday, June 14, raised $245,000 for the Mobile Mammography Unit, which is on track to launch in October 2025, just in time for Breast Cancer Awareness Month.


“Breast cancer is the most frequently diagnosed cancer among women today, affecting nearly 100 women in our region each year, so we couldn’t be more grateful to our community for partnering with us on this initiative to bring the latest breast cancer screening and early detection technology to the Bemidji region,” said Karla Eischens, president for Sanford Health Bemidji.


Phase one of the Bemidji region’s long-term Mobile Mammography plan will serve the following locations: Walker, Bagley, Blackduck, Cass Lake and Park Rapids. Additional locations will be added over time.



Lifesaving Care, Close to Home

  • Currently, the Edith Sanford Breast Center located inside the Sanford Bemidji Main Clinic provides more than 6,400 mammogram screenings to Bemidji-area patients each year.
  • With our new Mobile Mammography service, we can provide over 1,100 mammogram screenings annually for women in our surrounding communities.
  • Total appointment times, from the moment patients arrive at our Mobile Mammography unit until they leave, typically take less than 25 minutes. That means no more having to take a day off work to travel for a mammogram.


Early Detection for Successful Outcomes

  • A low dose 3D mammogram allows our experts to detect breast cancer at its earliest and smallest stage, giving women a faster and more accurate understanding of their breast health.
  • Thanks to 3D mammography, 76% of breast cancers diagnosed at Edith Sanford in Bemidji in 2023 were caught at stage 0 or stage 1, when the disease is most treatable.
  • With increasing rates of breast cancer cases among underserved populations, it’s more important than ever to offer accessible mammography services for those in our surrounding communities. We anticipate our Mobile Mammography unit will increase breast cancer screening rates among underserved women by up to 5%.

Anne’s Story


Meet Anne, who recently shared her breast cancer journey and her gratitude for the team at the Edith Sanford Breast Center at the Pours for a Purpose event. Philanthropy is fueling cutting-edge breast cancer equipment, enhancing care and supporting meaningful programs that make a difference for patients like Anne.

Give for Good


100% of your gift through the Sanford Health Foundation will help purchase and equip a state-of-the art Mobile Mammography unit for the Bemidji region. Every gift is needed to help make this lifesaving service a reality for women across our communities.