USPSTF Mammography Recommendation Could Put Thousands of Lives at Risk

Adoption of draft United States Preventive Services Task Force breast cancer screening recommendations would result in thousands of additional and unnecessary breast cancer deaths each year, the American College of Radiology said.

Adoption of draft United States Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) breast cancer screening recommendations would result in thousands of additional and unnecessary breast cancer deaths each year. Thousands more women would experience more extensive and expensive treatments than if their cancers were found early by a regular mammogram. Adoption of these USPSTF recommendations could also strip millions of women 40-and-older of private insurance coverage with no copay for mammograms at the time of their choosing previously guaranteed by the Affordable Care Act (ACA).

The ACA requires private insurers to cover exams or procedures given a grade of “B” or higher by the USPSTF. The Task Force gave routine screening of women ages 40-49 a grade of “C” and gave a “B” grade only to biennial (every other year) screening for women ages 50 to 74. This would indicate that women ages 40 to 49 who choose routine screening and those 50 to 74 who want to be screened annually would not be guaranteed coverage. This may particularly impact underserved and rural areas.

Read the press release from the American College of Radiology: http://bit.ly/1DdtqM7