National Breast Imaging Academy (NBIA)

National Breast Imaging Academy (NBIA)

Build To Beat Breast Cancer

Prevent Breast Cancer and Manchester Foundation Trust Charity have joined forces to address the serious workforce shortages within breast imaging. The challenges have led to delays in breast cancer diagnosis, closure of breast centres, and reduced recruitment to research studies. Together, the charities are launching a £3.2 million appeal for a new National Breast Imaging Academy, ‘Build To Beat Breast Cancer’.

Build To Beat Breast Cancer


Incidence of breast cancer has continued to rise across the UK. In the last 10 years, GP referrals to breast units have doubled.

Severe workforce shortages. While the need for breast imaging is increasing, the shortage of clinicians, radiographers and radiologists has reached severe levels. Almost 15% of breast radiologist and radiographic posts are vacant nationally, and by 2025, 38% of breast radiologists, 49% of breast clinicians and 40% of the doctors are expected to retire.

Breast centres are closing. Due to a lack of radiologists, several breast centres across the country have closed, including Salford and Stockport within Greater Manchester. This has placed even greater pressures on the remaining units.

Inadequate training facilities. As a result of service pressures, identifying training space for trainees is becoming increasingly difficult, creating the perfect storm of an overstretched, under-resourced workforce with inadequate training facilities.

Research is suffering. The lack of appropriate space is also hindering the ability of many centres to participate in vital research studies.

The pandemic significantly exacerbated the existing challenges. With screening capacity being reduced due to social distancing, and many staff being redistributed to support the care of covid patients, the situation has considerably worsened. Research has shown that 1.5 million fewer breast screening appointments have been carried out since March 2020, with an estimated 12,000 people that could be living with undiagnosed breast cancer.

We must act now. Without additional investment to provide imaging and training facilities, patients will be directly impacted, leading to delays in breast cancer diagnosis. Overwhelming evidence suggests we must act now to tackle the needs set by the ever-increasing demand.



National Breast Imaging Academy

Build To Beat Breast Cancer. The National Breast Imaging Academy (NBIA), which will be an extension of The Nightingale Centre and Prevent Breast Cancer Research Unit at Wythenshawe Hospital, will provide a solution to this problem.

The National Breast Imaging Academy will offer excellent workforce training facilities, enable an extra 13,000 patients be seen each year and offer additional capacity for research into breast cancer diagnosis and treatment.

The Build. In 2018, Health Education England committed £6 million to establish and deliver training initiatives across all professional groups at the NBIA. This has enabled the charities to concentrate on fundraising £3.2 million for a bespoke building in which to host the academy’s training programmes.

Training. This purpose-built home for the NBIA will deliver the space and cutting-edge facilities required to train the next generation of breast imaging staff in the UK.

Screening. Not only will the NBIA train radiographers, radiologists, breast clinicians, nurses, medical students, apprentices and administrative staff, the facility will expand the unit’s existing imaging capacity for patients by up to 30%. This will enable The Nightingale Centre to see an extra 5,000 new patients and 8,000 follow-up patients per year, greatly enhancing the breast service, and saving a great many lives.



Prevent Breast Cancer have joined forced with Manchester Foundation Trust Charity to launch our ‘Build To Beat Breast Cancer’ appeal with the mission of raising £3.2 million in 18 months for this future proofed build.

Since 2010, Prevent Breast Cancer have awarded over £3.8 million to funding ground-breaking research into the prediction and prevention of the disease. In 2007, we helped generate £2 million to build The Nightingale Centre and Prevent Breast Cancer Research Unit. Manchester Foundation Trust Charity have raised more than £70 million in just over a decade. Including £3.9 million raised in 12 months to enable a Helipad to be built at the Trust’s Oxford Road Campus.

Together, with our combined expertise, we embark on this mission to train the next generation, alleviate strain on the existing services, and save lives.



We invite you to be a part of this journey. Register your details below to receive updates on our progress, and information on opportunities to support this campaign. Together, we will Build to Beat Breast Cancer.

To find out more about the National Breast Imaging Academy visit:


This project is supported by Prevent Breast Cancer, Public Health England, The Royal College of RadiologistsThe Society of Radiographers, The Association of Breast Clinicians and a number of other charities across the country.