Brinks Measures Promote Breast Cancer Awareness and Detection

Measures would raise funds, name October Breast Cancer Awareness Month
Wednesday, October 2, 2013

GRAND RAPIDS — Rep. Winnie Brinks (D-Grand Rapids) continued the fight for the early detection and treatment of breast cancer by introducing House Resolution 234, naming October Breast Cancer Awareness Month in Michigan, and House Bill 5047, which would create a fundraising license plate to support breast and cervical cancer screenings for uninsured or underinsured women. These measures come on top of House Bill 4260, introduced in February, which would require mammography reports to include information on breast density and encourage those who have dense breast tissue to consult with their doctors about other screening options.

“Far too many mothers, wives, sisters and daughters have been lost to this ravaging disease,” Brinks said. “Fortunately, advances in medicine have made it more possible than ever to cure, but only if cancer is detected early. My proposals would spread the word about breast cancer and the importance of early detection and treatment, while also raising funds to provide cancer screenings to women who might not otherwise get them.”

The bill to create license plate would raise funds to benefit the Breast and Cervical Cancer Control Program, administered by the Department of Community Health. The program offers breast and cervical screening and diagnostic services to eligible women who otherwise would not have access to these services. To be enrolled in this program, woman must be primarily between the ages of 40-64, without insurance or underinsured and must fall below 250 percent of the federal poverty guidelines.

“I’m grateful that the House passed the resolution naming October Breast Cancer Awareness Month in Michigan, but there is so much more that needs to be done,” Brinks said. “My bills would support the early detection — and, therefore, the early treatment — of breast cancer, which would save lives.”

Brinks is hopeful that her bills to inform women about breast tissue density and alternative screening options and to raise funds for cancer screening will soon be taken up in committee and moved to the House floor.

“Cancer doesn’t know the difference between Democrats or Republicans,” Brinks said. “It threatens us all. That’s why we need to unite in the fight against it. I look forward to bipartisan support for these common-sense measures.”