Komen Announces 2014 Advocacy Priorities

Our promise at Susan G. Komen is to save lives and end breast cancer. It’s a monumental task, but with more than $2.5 billion invested in this fight, we are working passionately towards the day when no one has to hear the words “you have breast cancer.”

We are in communities across the U.S., ensuring women and men have access to treatment, financial and social support programs. We’re in laboratories around the globe, searching for answers to some of the most challenging questions in breast cancer with more than $800 million invested to date.

And our work continues in state capitols across the country – and in our own National Capitol. Public policy continues to be a key area of focus at Komen. We are proud of our advocacy work over the years to protect breast cancer screening and research funding and to advance breast health and cancer care policy at the federal and state levels. It is absolutely critical that breast cancer patients have access to lifesaving treatment and quality breast cancer care if we expect to continue to make progress against this disease.

As the 113th Congress and state legislatures reconvene this month, Komen is pleased to announce its 2014 Advocacy Priorities.  These issues will serve as the focus of our advocacy work in the coming year.  They are:

• Protecting federal and state funding for the National Breast and Cervical Cancer Early Detection Program (NBCCEDP), to ensure all women have access to potentially lifesaving breast cancer screening. In 2012, Komen advocates and partners were able to help protect a combined $300 million in state and federal funding for this program.

• Ensuring continued federal investment in cancer research through the National Institutes of Health (NIH), National Cancer Institute (NCI) and Department of Defense (DOD), to discover and deliver the cures. With ongoing budget debate in Congress, we are working to ensure policymakers understand the importance of continued research funding.

• Requiring insurance companies to provide coverage for oral anti-cancer drugs on a basis that is no less favorable than what’s already provided for intravenously-administered chemotherapy, to protect patients from high out-of pocket costs. By offering this cost-effective oral option, many patients (particularly those in rural settings) may also experience better quality of life thanks to fewer side effects and reduced travel time to treatment.

• Expanding Medicaid coverage to ensure the availability of the full-range of breast health services to low-income women, including cancer screening, diagnostics and treatment.

We’re excited about the potential of our 2014 Advocacy Priorities and, as always, appreciate the enthusiasm and hard work of our supporters to ensure that breast cancer issues are front and center before policymakers. 

Stay tuned to the Komen blog for updates on this important work. Looking forward to a wonderful 2014!

Learn more about Komen Advocacy programs here

About the author

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Chandini Portteus has written 5 articles for Susan G. Komen® | Blog

As Chief Mission Officer at Susan G. Komen®, Chandini Portteus provides strategic leadership and management of Komen's key mission areas: research, community health, public policy and global programs. Her oversight includes an active research portfolio of more than $300 million in funding worldwide and community health outreach that serves millions of women and families annually through funding of education, screening, psychosocial and medical services to 2,000 Komen grantees.