Sending Office: Honorable Debbie Wasserman Schultz
Protect Access to Lifesaving Mammograms – Cosponsor the PALS Act
Supporting Groups: American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, American College of Radiology, American Women Unite for Breast Cancer Screening, Black Women’s Health Imperative, Breast Friends, Bright Pink, DenseBreast
Info. Inc, Don’t Be a Chump! Check for a Lump!, FORCE: Facing Our Risk of Cancer Empowered, Living Beyond Breast Cancer, Men Against Breast Cancer, Moffitt Cancer Center, National Association of Nurse Practitioners in Women’s Health, National Black Nurses
Association, National Consortium of Breast Centers, National Hispanic Medical Association, National Patient Advocate Foundation, Prevent Cancer Foundation, Servicewomen’s Action Network, Sharsheret, Society of Breast Imaging, Susan G. Komen, Tigerlily Foundation
This year, more than 40,000 Americans will lose their lives to breast cancer. While most women develop breast cancer later in life, young women do develop this horrible disease, often developing rapidly in more aggressive forms. In 2017, the American Cancer
Society estimated that nine percent of new, fatal cases of breast cancer were among women in their forties.
Despite that, the most recent recommendations from the United States Preventative Services Task Force (USPSTF) gave annual mammograms for women ages 40-49 a “C” grade, meaning they recommend that screening be performed only selectively, and stated that women
between the ages of 50-74 should have mammograms only bi-annually. Because many insurance companies use these guidelines as the basis for coverage, 22 million women between 40 and 49 could be at risk for losing coverage for lifesaving mammograms.
The Protecting Access to Lifesaving Screenings (PALS) Act (H.R. 2777) protects access to annual mammograms with insurance coverage with no-copay starting at age 40 by extending the moratorium on the USPSTF breast cancer screening guidelines,
and also ensures that veterans treated in the Veterans Health Administration do not face these same obstacles to getting the care they and their health care providers deem necessary.
The PALS Act was previously passed extending the moratorium to 2021; this Congress, we are seeking to extend the moratorium to 2025. The USPSTF guidelines are an outlier when compared to expert opinions in the cancer treatment and advocacy community. Until
there is consensus, women need access to mammography using the guidelines that are most widely accepted.
These screenings can mean the difference between life and death for an untold number of women every year. Please join us in protecting access to these lifesaving services. To cosponsor, please contact Natalie Litton in Rep. Wasserman Schultz’s office at
Natalie.Litton@mail.house.gov or Erin McMenamin in Rep. Brooks’ office at Erin.McMenamin@mail.house.gov.
Debbie Wasserman Schultz Susan Brooks
Member of Congress Member of Congress
e-Dear Colleague version 2.0