Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Free Mammography Screening for Uninsured Women

Dec 14, 2010 Sylvia Cruz

Free Breast Mammograms - dharder@MorgueFile

Free Breast Mammograms - dharder@MorgueFile

I recently had my annual mammogram at a local Hospital’s imaging center. While waiting my turn, I talked with a woman who was there for the second time and who turned out to be uninsured. She was forced to pay cash for the first screening and didn’t know how she was going to pay for a follow up mammogram and MRI.

I went home thinking that there has to be a way to get a service as basic as a mammogram at no cost to the uninsured. It turns out that there are some free breast Cancer screening services, including mammograms and MRI for uninsured low income women.

The guidelines for breast cancer screening vary depending on a woman’s age and history of breast cancer in the family. The American Cancer Society provides general guidelines for breast cancer detection. These guidelines include annual mammograms for women 40 years and older. Also, women with genetic markers for breast cancer and family history are recommended to undergo a MRI in addition to the mammogram. The recommendation for MRI testing should be done by a woman’s doctor. These recommendations are in addition to monthly breast self exams.

Free Mammograms for Low Income and Uninsured Women

For women on government programs like Medicare and Medicaid, mammograms and other breast cancer screenings are generally covered. For uninsured women, there are many breast Cancer imaging centers that provide low cost and free mammography.

The Center for Disease Control and Prevention, CDC, funds and provides local breast Cancer screening centers across all states. Using the CDC website, women can find low cost and free mammogram services by location. The CDC can also be contacted by phone at 1866-442-2262 to obtain free mammograms information.

The Susan G. Komen Foundation’s Affiliate Programs

Susan G. Komen is a non profit organization that funds local programs for detection and prevention of breast Cancer. Although the organization does not provide free mammograms directly, its affiliates do. These affiliates receive grants so that they can in turn provide free breast Cancer screening services such as mammograms.

Local breast Cancer detection services can be located using the Foundation’s internet site at The Foundation may be contacted by telephone at 1877-465-6636 to find an affiliate that provides free mammograms and screening services.

Hospitals Outreach Programs for Breast Cancer Detection

Major local hospitals may operate community health outreach programs that benefit low income and uninsured women. These programs may include free and low cost mammograms and other Cancer detection services. To find out about free screening, women should contact major hospitals in their area and request information on free breast Cancer screening.

Women without health insurance should seek help for getting free and low cost annual mammograms. Government, non profit agencies and public and private hospitals provide free breast Cancer screening in local areas.

Women with low income and no insurance should start by talking to their doctor about low cost and free mammography. This is especially important for women 40 years and older and women with a family history of breast Cancer. Women who are determined to be at high risk of developing breast Cancer by a doctor should also seek these services.

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Copyright Sylvia Cruz. Contact the author to obtain permission for republication.

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