Affordable Care Act: Newest Tool in Fight
Against Breast Cancer
Joseph- October 14, 2013
HARRISBURG, Pa. - October is National
Breast Cancer Awareness Month, and this year's observance marks a major shift
for women's ability to access the health care and screening tools they need.
Schafer, who works for the American Cancer Society's Cancer Action Network,
pointed out that under the Affordable Care Act, women cannot be denied coverage
because of pre-existing conditions such as breast cancer.
health-care law also requires health plans to cover annual preventive
mammograms for women starting at age 40," he said. "It prohibits
lifetime dollar limits on coverage, and it also restricts the amount of
out-of-pocket costs. And for an organization like the American Cancer Society
that's focused on finding a cure for this disease, nothing can be better."
on prevention, earlier detection and better treatment options have all helped
the five-year survival rate for breast cancer climb to around 98 percent.
Schafer said more improvements are expected as more women are able to access
affordable health care and get regular check-ups, and treatment if needed.
learned a lot about cancer. We've learned a lot about preventing it. We've
learned a lot about treating it, but the one challenge we've encountered is
cost," he said. "And the peace of mind that women are going to have
looking into the next year ... They can spend more time focusing on getting
healthy, and not worrying about their life savings."
average day in Pennsylvania, 33 women are diagnosed with breast cancer and six
die from the disease.