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House passes bill requiring coverage for breast cancer exams


The Register-Herald

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — The House of Delegates voted Tuesday, 96-3, to require West Virginia Public Employees Insurance Act and other insurance providers to cover breast cancer screenings.

House Bill 2471, effective Jan. 1, 2018, if signed into law, requires providers to cover the following:

• One baseline mammogram for women between 30 and 40; a mammogram every year for women 40 and older; and a mammogram at any age and intervals deemed necessary by the woman’s health care provider for women under 40 with a family history of breast cancer or other risk factors.

• A comprehensive ultrasound screening of an entire breast or breasts if a mammogram demonstrates heterogeneous or dense breast tissue based on the Breast Imaging Reporting and Data System established by the American College of Radiology. If a woman is believed to be at increased risk for breast cancer, a comprehensive ultrasound screening must also be covered.

The bill also calls for health care providers to notify patients about breast density. Patients must be notified that high density breast tissue is not abnormal, but potential risks are associated from high breast density.

Health care providers must also provide information on the benefits of additional screening and suggest the patient speak with their primary care physician.

 Delegates Michael Folk, R-Berkeley; Pat McGeehan, R-Hancock; and Tony Paynter, R-Wyoming, voted against passage of the bill.

H.B. 2471 now moves to the Senate.

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