GURNEE, Ill. – Residents may soon have easier access to lifesaving colorectal cancer prevention screenings under legislation passed by state Rep. Joyce Mason, D-Gurnee. Mason’s House Bill 2653 was voted out of the Senate yesterday and now goes to the governor’s desk for final approval.
“In recent years, a new colorectal cancer screening method has become widely available that allows individuals to check for early signs of cancer from the comfort of their own homes,” Mason said. “This innovative approach to screening for colorectal cancer makes it easier for residents to catch this deadly disease before it progresses too far, but some insurance companies are making it unreasonably expensive for individuals to make use of this new technology.”
Current law requires health insurance companies to provide coverage for preventative colonoscopies performed as part of regular colorectal cancer screenings. If a resident uses a self-administered colorectal cancer screening kit, receives a positive result, and then schedules a colonoscopy to follow up on their at-home test, a health insurance company may refuse to cover the colonoscopy on the grounds that the procedure is diagnostic rather than preventative.
Mason’s House Bill 2653 requires health insurance companies to classify colonoscopies ordered in response to positive at-home colorectal cancer screenings as preventative procedures. As a result, Mason’s legislation prohibits insurance companies from requiring residents to pay out of pocket for these follow-up colonoscopies on the grounds that they are not preventative procedures.
“Cost should never stand in the way of getting a lifesaving cancer prevention screening,” Mason said. “My bill closes a harmful loophole in insurance law and makes sure that colonoscopies are accessible and affordable for all residents who need them.”
Visit Rep. Joyce Mason’s website
247-E Stratton Office Building
Springfield, IL 62706
36100 Brookside Dr.
Suites LL 60
Gurnee, IL 60031