WASHINGTON, DC -- Our thoughts and well wishes are with Sen. Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn., as she shares her personal journey with early-stage breast cancer. Sen. Klobuchar’s recent statements on the importance of routine screenings and follow-up are reminders that finding cancer early can give the best chance for successful treatment.
The COVID-19 pandemic has delayed essential cancer screening tests and this year, an estimated 284,200 new cases of invasive breast cancer will be diagnosed in the U.S. In addition, a recent American Cancer Society study in the journal, CANCER, finds breast cancer screening rates declined among women aged 50 to 74 years within 32 community health centers that serve lower-income populations during the pandemic.
The National Breast and Cervical Cancer Early Detection Program (NBCCEDP), which serves under and uninsured patients, has been chronically underfunded and is expected to see a significant increase in demand for its services in light of pandemic-related coverage loss and ongoing health care delays. The program has successfully provided lifesaving screenings to low income and underserved populations for 30 years. The American Cancer Society’s advocacy affiliate, the American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network (ACS CAN) is calling on Congress to increase funding in the FY22 budget to meet increased demand for delayed screenings and to serve all the uninsured and underinsured patients who qualify for the program.
To find out more about breast cancer, including risk factors, screening guidelines, and treatment options, visit cancer.org. Talk to a health care provider about your risk for breast cancer and the recommended screening tests and schedule that are right for you. For details on advocacy efforts related to breast cancer visit fightcancer.org/breastcancer.