Congresswoman Marcia L. Fudge (OH-11) recognizes October as National Breast Cancer Awareness Month. One in every four women will have breast cancer in her lifetime; 1.3 million women are diagnosed annually. It's the most prevalent form of cancer in the world today, and African-American women experience higher death rates from breast cancer than other racial or ethnic groups in the United States.
"I recognize the impact of this disease on women across the country, of every race, ethnic background, and income level. The disease does not impact only those able to pay the bills, or those who have families standing ready to support and care for them. And it certainly affects more than the person who is diagnosed, impacting their friends and their family, neighbors and coworkers. Every woman should have the opportunity to take preventive measures to safeguard against this disease. This month, let's take the time to recognize the strength of survivors, the perseverance of those currently battling the disease, and the bravery of those who have lost their lives," said Congresswoman Fudge.
The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists recommends a mammography screening every 1-2 years for women aged 40-49 years and every year for women age 50 or older. Thanks to the health reform law, the Affordable Care Act, most private health plans and Medicare now cover women's preventive health care -- such as mammograms and screenings for cervical cancer --with no co-pays or other out-of-pocket costs. That means women can get services they need to detect and prevent breast cancer before it spreads or becomes fatal, without worrying that they'll have to pay for these services out of their own pockets. Women also have new rights and protections against insurance company abuse under the Affordable Care Act. If diagnosed with breast cancer or another illness, women are now protected from having their coverage taken away if they get sick and when they need coverage the most.