October 28, 2014
Did you know that Breast Cancer now affects one-sixth of women in the United States?
While the Women’s Health Care Act of 1998 mandated insurance coverage for breast reconstruction, current studies reveal that over 70% of women are not informed of their reconstructive options at the time of diagnosis. Bipartisan legislation, entitled the Breast Cancer Patient Education Act (HR 5937), was introduced to the House of Representatives on June 8th, 2012. This legislation would require that women be informed of their reconstructive options at the time of diagnosis. Active participation in the decision-making process is the most important factor in patient satisfaction through the breast cancer journey.
What Can You Do?
• Encourage your friends and family to have their mammogram and physical exam.
• Be a cancer buddy: When a friend has been diagnosed with breast cancer, accompany her to her doctor appointments
• Be active: Request that your friend be referred to a board certified plastic surgeon to discuss her reconstructive options.
• Be an advocate: Write your senators and Congressman and ask for their support of HR 5937.
Dr. Karen Vaniver is a nationally recognized plastic surgeon who specializes in breast reconstruction. She is also a breast cancer survivor who has the breast cancer gene (BRCA1), and the granddaughter, daughter and sister of breast cancer survivors.