Governor Wolf Receives Pennsylvania Breast Cancer Coalition Pink Ribbon Award for Requiring Insurers to Cover 3D Screening Mammograms at No Extra Cost
October 06, 2017
Harrisburg, PA – Governor Wolf today received the PA Breast Cancer Coalition’s highest honor, the Pink Ribbon award, for his work to require that 3D mammograms be covered by insurance under existing state law and must be provided to Pennsylvania women at no cost. Since October 2015, insurers must treat 3D mammograms the same as traditional two-dimensional mammograms when determining healthcare coverage.
The award was presented by PA Breast Cancer Coalition President and Founder Pat Halpin-Murphy during the Coalition’s annual luncheon and awards ceremony in recognition of Breast Cancer Awareness Month at the Harrisburg Hilton.
“I am proud that Pennsylvania was the first state in the country to require insurers to cover 3D mammograms at no extra cost,” Gov. Wolf told the crowd of 800. “This modern technology offers new opportunities for physicians to diagnose breast cancer in women and provide life-saving treatment earlier than ever.”
The Wolf Administration announced the adoption of the 3D mammogram policy on Oct. 5, 2015 when First Lady Frances Wolf was the honorary chair of the Coalition.
Three-dimensional mammograms, a service also known as “tomosynthesis,” are becoming more common as many health care facilities in Pennsylvania are replacing 2D mammography with 3D technology. The Pennsylvania Insurance Department had heard from many consumers that when given the choice of a 2D or 3D mammogram, the 3D option comes with an additional charge – typically between $50 and $60 – whereas the 2D mammogram would be free. Other consumers had reported being given a 3D mammogram without any discussion of their alternatives and receiving a surprise bill for the additional fee. All that changed with the adoption of the policy.
The Pink Ribbon award is the highest honor bestowed by the PA Breast Cancer Coalition and is awarded for an individual or individuals who have done something outstanding in support of women with breast cancer. A Pink Ribbon award also was given to Helen Michener and Laraine Forry during the luncheon ceremony.
Any consumer with questions about insurance coverage for 3D mammograms should visit the Pennsylvania Insurance Department website, “3D Mammograms FAQs.”