MONTGOMERY, AL – February 1, 2021 – As lawmakers prepare to dive into the first day of the 2021 legislative session, the American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network (ACS CAN) looks ahead to what public health initiatives our lawmakers can accomplish in the new year.
Alabama has the opportunity to do more in ensuring adequate and affordable access to care including preventive cancer screenings. Such action would come at a critical time for families who are experiencing the heavy economic effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. All individuals deserve to live full, healthy lives now and long after the pandemic passes.
ACS CAN is advocating for:
- Increasing Access to Medicaid: States that have expanded Medicaid eligibility have seen significant improvements in cancer prevention and control efforts, reducing cancer incidence and mortality among lower income parents and adults, including those from rural communities and people of of color. ACS CAN is advocating for an expansion of Medicaid eligiblity, up to 138% above the federal poverty line, providing state residents a pathway to comprehensive health insurance coverage, critical in the fight against cancer.
- Increasing Funding for State Screening Programs: Colorectal and breast cancer remain the most common cancers in the nation and of which early detection plays an important role in survivorship. To expand screenings and save lives, ACS CAN is advocating for a $250,000 increase for the Alabama Breast and Cervical Cancer Early Detection Program and equal increase for the Colorectal Cancer and Prostate Screening Program.
Cancer patients, survivors and advocates look forward to meeting virtually with lawmakers over these issues during ACS CAN's annual Cancer Action Week beginning February 9, 2021. ACS CAN encourages individuals, businesses and organizations that are interested in these issues to reach out to ACS CAN to get involved in the fight against cancer at fightcancer.org/AL.
About ACS CAN
The American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network (ACS CAN) is making cancer a top priority for public officials and candidates at the federal, state and local levels. ACS CAN empowers advocates across the country to make their voices heard and influence evidence-based public policy change as well as legislative and regulatory solutions that will reduce the cancer burden. As the American Cancer Society's nonprofit, nonpartisan advocacy affiliate, ACS CAN is critical to the fight for a world without cancer. For more information, visit www.fightcancer.org.