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Stabenow, Women Senators Call Attention to Alarming Decline of Women Receiving Mammograms

Press Release

Location: Washington, DC

Stabenow, Women Senators Call Attention to Alarming Decline of Women Receiving Mammograms

U.S. Senator Debbie Stabenow (D-MI) today joined Senator Barbara A. Mikulski (D-MD), Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-TX), and other women Senators to host a forum responding to a startling report by the National Cancer Institute (NCI) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) on the dramatic decline of women getting mammograms to screen for breast cancer.

"We all know someone - a friend, a co-worker, a family member - whose life has been touched by cancer," said Stabenow. "And we know that early detection is the key to fighting this terrible disease. In Michigan, the mortality rate is on the decline, but we must not take that fact for granted."

Breast cancer is the second leading cause of cancer-related deaths among women in the United States. Mammograms play an important role in early detection and reduction of breast cancer. According to the report, the overall rate at which women are undergoing regular mammograms fell 4 percent between 2000 and 2005, marking the first significant decline since use of mammograms started expanding rapidly in 1987. The new research is the first to document the trend nationally.

"We sit on key committees where we have the opportunity to take the information from the experts assembled here today and use it to shape public policy," said Stabenow. "As women Senators, we have a duty and an obligation to fight disparities in our nation's health."

The hearing included testimony from Nancy Breen, Ph.D., study author of the National Cancer Institute, Dr. John Niederhuber, Director of the National Cancer Institute, Dr. Julie Louise Gerberding, M.P.H., Director of the Center for Disease Control, Robert Smith, Ph.D., Director of Cancer Screening, Cancer Control Science, American Cancer Association, and Hala Moddelmog, President and CEO of the Susan G. Komen for the Cure.

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