Early breast cancer detection saves lives

September 30, 2019
Spread the word about the importance of breast cancer screening during Breast Cancer Awareness Month.

Chances are you or someone you know has been affected by breast cancer. Except for skin cancer, breast cancer is the most common cancer among women, affecting one in eight American women. And despite treatment advances, it remains the second-leading cause of cancer death in women, after lung cancer.

The good news? Most women can survive breast cancer if it’s found and treated early. That’s why regular screening is so important. Women whose breast cancer is detected at an early stage have a 93 percent or higher survival rate in the first five years.

What you can do

If you’re a woman, have regular breast cancer screenings. The American Cancer Society has screening guidelines for women at average risk, and for those at high risk.

Employees and their spouses with medical coverage* through the Board of Pensions can have annual preventive care visits with their network gynecologist and get recommended screenings without paying a copay, deductible, or copayment. Plus, the visit qualifies for 50 Call to Health points.

If you see your gynecologist for any symptoms, the visit is considered a sick visit; regular plan provisions (copay, deductible, and/or copayment) apply for the visit and any treatment or tests.

Men can show their support by encouraging the women in their lives to get screened. And, while rare, men can develop breast cancer, too. See a doctor right away if you have any of the following symptoms: a lump or swelling, skin dimpling or puckering, redness or scaling, nipple retraction (turning inward), or discharge.

*Those enrolled in Triple-S, GeoBlue, or the Medicare Supplement Plan also have preventive care benefits under their plans, but coverage details may differ. Consult your plan’s provisions for details. Call to Health is not available to members enrolled in Triple-S, GeoBlue, or the Medicare Supplement Plan.