The American Cancer Society says Indiana isn’t doing nearly enough to support its breast and cervical cancer screening program.
Government relations director Brianna Herndon says going into a budget session, cancer prevention programs are one of the first items on the Cancer Action Network’s to-do list. And while tobacco cessation funding usually gets the spotlight, she says it’s the state’s breast and cervical cancer program that should be getting attention this year. The program gets money from both the federal and state government, and Herndon says the state is only providing about four percent of the CDC’s recommending funding level.
“So we’re seeing women who are not learning about the program, we’re seeing women that are not being scheduled for appointments, we’re seeing women that are being referred out to other community-based programs," says Herndon. "So we just really need a stable funding source.”
House Public Health Committee Chair Ed Clere says he’s open to discussing the issue, noting the state has room for improvement in a lot of areas.
“When you look at our ranking nationally on many measures of health, Indiana doesn’t rank very well," says Clere. "So we have a lot of opportunities there and elsewhere.”
The legislative session begins January 6th.