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Senate Introduces ASPS Breast Cancer Awareness Bill

On May 5, Senator Roy Blunt (R-Mo.) and Senator Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio) introduced S.1192, the Breast Cancer Patient Education Act (BCPEA) of 2015. The American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS) is the leader behind this legislation and worked closely with the sponsors prior to the bill's introduction.

With its reintroduction, six Senators have joined Senators Blunt and Brown by signing on as original cosponsors of the bill: Sen. Kelly Ayotte (R-N.H.), Sen. Mazie Hirono (D-Hawaii), Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.), Sen. Deb Fischer (R-Neb.), and Sen. Shelley Moore Capito (R-W.Va.). Representatives Leonard Lance (R-N.J.-7) and Kathy Castor (D-Fla.-14) are expected to introduce the identical House bill in the coming weeks. The baseline of support for BCPEA is a very positive sign and suggests that we can build on this momentum.

The Breast Cancer Patient Education Act (BCPEA) of 2015 requires the Secretary of Health and Human Services to plan and implement an education campaign to inform breast cancer patients about the availability and coverage of breast reconstruction and other post-mastectomy options. Educational materials will inform women of their right to breast reconstruction under federal law and provide women with information about when breast reconstruction or prostheses may be appropriate within their recovery plan.

ASPS will discuss the BCPEA during the Midwest/Southeast Regional Fly-In on June 2-3 in Washington, D.C., and will try to recruit additional cosponsors in meetings with members of Congress. Patient education remains a top priority for ASPS, and we commend the sponsors for their dedication to women as they recover from breast cancer.

Contact your member of Congress about becoming a cosponsor of the Breast Cancer Patient Education Act.