How Does ObamaCare Affect Breast Cancer Prevention and Treatment?

May 10th, 2013 by Brian Maiorana


The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) is a federal statute aimed at increasing the rate of health insurance overage for American citizens and reducing the cost of healthcare.

Together with Health Care and Education Reconciliation Act, it represents the most significant overhaul of the U.S. healthcare system in decades. You may know it by its more common name: ObamaCare.

Less than one year ago, the PPACA’s constitutionality was scrutinized and largely upheld by the Supreme Court. To put it more simply, ObamaCare is here to stay. Its provisions have started coming into force from 23rd March 2010 and will continue to roll out until 1st January 2020.

What Does That Mean?

ObamaCare’s continuance is good news for cancer sufferers.

A number of measures inherent within the PPACA were created with the express intention of providing quality treatment care with a reduction in financial stress. Not only will ObamaCare offer healthcare coverage to cancer patients who could not previously afford it, it also introduces coverage for preventative treatments. More notably for breast cancer sufferers, women cannot be denied health insurance because of a pre-existing condition.

In addition to that, a number of measures will benefit those suffering from breast cancer and those at risk:

  • Improved health insurance coverage: access to health insurance must be approved or continued regardless of gender, age, or pre-existing conditions such as cancer.
  • Improved cancer detection coverage: cheaper or free (dependant upon age) screening and preventative services for breast cancer.
  • Increased Medicare drug coverage: the Medicare Part D prescription cap in coverage will be narrowed gradually between now and 2020.
  • Improved payment limits: there are no longer lifetime limits on payments and annual limits will be lifted in 2014.
  • Coverage for clinical trials: from 1st January 2014, eligible patients will be offered coverage in clinical trials that are appropriate to their condition.

There is of course far more to ObamaCare than the above provisions, but these are the items that offer the most hope for cancer sufferers and for those who are at risk. While it is not without its detractors and certainly does not promise flawless treatment for cancer sufferers, the PPACA’s existence is a good thing nonetheless.

To learn more about the impact of the PPACA in general and to get further information on its relevance to cancer sufferers, we recommend that you visit ObamaCare Facts.

Sources: The Mesothelioma Cancer Alliance Blog, International Business Times and Wikipedia

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