Advocating to Eliminate Breast Cancer Disparities

July 7, 2023

Breast cancer is the second most commonly diagnosed cancer among women[i] in the U.S. and the second leading cause of cancer death among women after lung cancer. Breast cancer is the leading cause of cancer death among Black and Hispanic women. Black women continue to be 40% more likely to die from the disease, despite lower incidence than White women. This racial disparity is largely the result of less access to high-quality breast cancer screening and bias in medical treatment Black women experience. Research confirms that the LGBTQ+ community also carries a disproportionate burden of cancer, with lesbian and bisexual women possibly showing an increased risk of breast cancer. LGBTQ+ individuals have consistently low rates of health insurance coverage which impacts screening for breast cancer. Lesbian and bisexual women have an increased risk of breast cancer compared to heterosexual women.[ii],[iii]


Our ability to continue to make progress against cancer relies heavily on eliminating inequities that exist in breast cancer prevention and treatment. That is why ACS CAN advocates for policies to reduce the disparities in breast cancer by improving access to prevention and early detection services, patient navigation services, insurance coverage, in-network facilities, and clinical trials.


[i] Throughout this document women refers to individuals assigned female at birth. However, the NBCCEDP program also provides screening and treatment services to eligible transgender individuals.

[iii] Jason Domogauer, Tal Cantor, Gwendolyn Quinn, Marina Stasenko, Disparities in cancer screenings for sexual and gender minorities, Current Problems in Cancer, Volume 46, Issue 5, 2022, 100858, ISSN 0147-0272,