ONS Lobbies for Breast Cancer Screening Act in Congress

June 08, 2017 by Chris Pirschel ONS Staff Writer/Producer

Alongside congressional representatives Debbie Wasserman Schultz and Susan Brooks, ONS and other organizations are lobbying for support of the Protecting Access to Lifesaving Screenings (PALS) Act (https://susanwbrooks.house.gov/media-center/press-releases/brooks-introduces-legislation-with-wasserman-schultz-to-protect-women-s). This legislation would push insurance companies—along with the Veterans Health Administration—to provide access and coverage to breast cancer screenings for women aged 40–49.

Despite disagreement in the oncology community, the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) issued a “C” grade recommendation for breast cancer screenings in women aged 40–49. The USPSTF only recommends mammograms for women in this age group on a selective basis. However, the National Cancer Institute reported that more than 29% of all new cases of breast cancer (https://seer.cancer.gov/statfacts/html/breast.html) occurred in women aged 35–54 between 2010–2014. Since many insurers base their coverage on USPSTF guidelines, millions of women aged 40–49 could potentially lose coverage to necessary cancer screenings.

Learn more about how you can advocate for your patients and your profession with ONS (https://www.ons.org/advocacy-policy).

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