February 22, 2024
By NMQF Staff
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 4, 2023
Congressional Leaders Introduce Bipartisan Legislation to Vastly Expand Early Cancer Detection
H.R. 2407 will address longstanding disparities in cancer outcomes for underserved communities
WASHINGTON, D.C. – On April 4th, Representatives Jodey Arrington, (R-TX), Terri Sewell (D-AL), Richard Hudson (R-NC), and Raul Ruiz (D-CA) introduced the Nancy Gardner Sewell Medicare Multi Cancer Early Detection Screening Coverage Act (H.R. 2407), which is an important step to providing Medicare beneficiaries timely access to multi-cancer early detection (MCED) technology once approved by the FDA. These groundbreaking tests complement existing screening, and dramatically improve early detection capabilities.
“This National Minority Health Month, we must raise the alarm that early detection of cancer is vital to closing the gap in screening and eliminating the scourge of preventable death, hospitalizations and high costs on minority and disadvantaged populations,” said Dr. Gary A. Puckrein, President and CEO of the National Minority Quality Forum. “With only 14% of cancers found with current available screening, far too many lives are lost to late-stage cancer diagnosis. The National Minority Quality Forum is dedicated to shifting cancer stage diagnosis and applaud the tireless work of Representatives Arrington, Sewell, Hudson, and Ruiz to introduce legislation that will help ensure access to MCED tests within Medicare once they are approved by the FDA.”
Today, only five out of the hundreds of different types of cancers have recommended screenings. The impact of late-stage cancer diagnosis is magnified in communities of color and throughout rural America where overall cancer outcomes are worse. MCED tests introduce a significant shift in the cancer screening landscape. Ensuring seniors have timely access is essential because age is the primary risk factor for cancer and more than 70% of cancer diagnoses are in the Medicare population. This legislation will open the door to a new era of detecting and treating cancer and help ensure that our most vulnerable citizens are not left behind.
Learn more about the legislation HERE.