Screenings are covered: Help stop breast cancer in its tracks

md mortalityMaryland has the sixth-highest breast cancer mortality rate in the United States, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

It’s unsettling to hear that, read that, live that. And it’s a ranking that must be lowered.

Early detection is key: breast cancer screenings and counseling are covered for many women under the Affordable Care Act, with no out-of-pocket cost.

The time to start is now! As Gov. Hogan has cast light on his own cancer battle, he described the importance of regular screenings earlier this month:

“As part of Breast Cancer Awareness Month, Maryland is recommending that women be screened regularly for breast cancer. In 2015, about 4,730 Maryland women will be diagnosed with breast cancer and an estimated 810 will die of the disease. Through awareness, we can increase screening rates, improve health outcomes for Maryland women and, by extension, our communities as a whole.”

Recently, we sat down with the team at Susan G. Komen Maryland to discuss the warning signs of breast cancer and what to do for prevention and awareness:

Every woman — and man — should learn their body to be aware of any breast changes, go to the doctor and get screened. Mammography is the most effective breast cancer screening tool used today.

As part of the Affordable Care Act, these screenings are covered for many women, with no copay or coinsurance, even if you haven’t met your yearly deductible. You also cannot be denied coverage or pay more based on your breast cancer history or other pre-existing conditions..

Open Enrollment begins Nov. 1. Learn more about choosing the best plan for you at MarylandHealthConnection.gov.

Your time is now.