The Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation has launched a new initiative offering a free breast assessment for members of its Income Protection Scheme.

About 9,000 women will be able to avail of the initiative.

The union says this is due to an increasing trend of breast cancer claims seen in the INMO's Income Protection Scheme over the past five years.

The ''Pink Power'' campaign is aimed at raising awareness of the risks and early signs of breast cancer.

It will be open to all women members regardless of age.

The initiative is being run in conjunction with the Mater Private Hospital, Irish Life and Cornmarket Financial Services.