“Breast cancer is a leading cause of cancer death among women, and the risks are even greater for Latinas and other women of color,” said Villa. “Breast cancer screenings have the power to save lives, as early detection is critical and increases a patient’s likelihood of survival and recovery.”
The American Cancer Society (ACS) recommends that women ages 40 to 44 should consult their regular physician about their personal risk factors for breast cancer, which can include aging, alcohol consumption, family history, an inactive lifestyle and obesity. For women ages 45 to 54, the ACS recommends receiving an annual mammogram and that women older than 55 switch to receive mammograms every other year, unless a doctor recommends more frequent screening.
Villa’s Senate Bill 162, which was recently signed into law by Gov. J.B. Pritzker, will expand preventative care to cover diagnostic mammograms, ensuring that there is no cost sharing or copayment for patients. Diagnostic mammograms are used as a follow-up to evaluate abnormalities seen or suspected on a screening mammogram. Currently, screening mammograms are considered preventative care, and are covered by all marketplace plans under the Affordable Care Act. Villa also supported a state budget that protects funding for the Illinois Breast and Cervical Cancer Program (IBCCP), providing low-income women with free cancer screenings
“While Donald Trump and other extreme politicians have worked to dismantle the Affordable Care Act, I have fought to maintain access to potentially lifesaving breast cancer screenings for low-income women,” continued Villa. “Women’s health care is a fundamental right, and it is critical that they have access to necessary screenings and follow-up tests without fear of facing exorbitant, out-of-pocket costs.”
For more information, please contact Villa’s constituent service office at 630-326-9319 or at StateRepKarinaVilla@gmail.com.