Reader zennurse brought this to my attention this morning, and I wanted to be sure everyone else saw it as well. The US Senate is considering cutting a break to health insurance companies by removing the requirement that they pay for cancer screenings such as mammograms, colonoscopies, and other essential diagnostic tools, according to the American Cancer Society website.
The ACS provides forms/contact information to contact your Senators on this.
My mother is a breast cancer survivor. Her cancer was caught early, due to a mammogram — and she’s alive today, after two surgeries and lengthy radiation treatments because her invasive cancer was caught at Stage I. I, too, have had a lump removed that was found on a mammogram — thankfully, it was benign, but I go for an annual mammogram now because of the increased potential of risk due to my family history. We can afford to pay for my mammogram, but low-income women around the nation cannot without their insurance paying at least part of the costs.
Cancer is not something that Senators ought to play around with in order to up the profit margin for big insurance, which also happens to be a big source of political campaign funding. Medical decisions ought to be made by patients and their doctors. We all pay enormous fees for health insurance these days (at least, those of us lucky enough to have insurance do…) — and we deserve something besides a "we’re not going to cover that, even though it could save your life" in return. Please take a moment to contact your Senators on this.
UPDATE: Even more on the S.1955 Enzi bill. This would hit diabetic screenings, fertility medication, and a whole host of other medical issues above and beyond cancer screenings.