Women have a one in eight chance of getting breast cancer. However, experts say that regular screenings and early detection substantially increase the rate of survival. Women age 40 and older are encouraged to have a mammogram each year to screen for breast cancer, but if you're underinsured or uninsured, like 45.7 million Americans currently are, mammograms can be prohibitively expensive.
The good news is that there's help.
Low-cost or free mammograms are available in most areas, and Medicare, Medicaid and most private insurance plans cover at least some of the cost of an annual mammogram.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention offers a state-by-state list of National Breast and Cervical Cancer Early Detection Program providers. (Canadians can find information about finding a mammogram provider here.)
And if you call the American Cancer Society at 1-800-ACS-2345 (1-800-227-2345), you can get information about free or low-cost mammogram facilities in your area. Local newspapers often run information about health clinics, too.
While we're talking about mammograms, here's a reminder card to send to the women in your life.
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