Protect Breast & Cervical Cancer Screening

Providing Breast & Cervical Cancer Screenings to Low-Income Oklahoma Women

Take Charge is Oklahoma’s breast and cervical early detection program which provides free mammograms and Pap tests to women aged 50-64 who are uninsured, underinsured, and have income below 185 percent of the federal poverty level. From 2008-2013, Oklahoma’s program detected 68 breast cancers and 170 cervical cancers and precancerous lesions.

Breast and Cervical Cancer in Oklahoma

  •  It is estimated that 2,770 women in Oklahoma will be diagnosed with breast cancer this year and 520 will die from the disease.
  • Finding breast and cervical cancer at an early stage increases the opportunity for effective treatment and patient survival.
  • Uninsured and underinsured women have lower screening rates for mammograms and pap tests, resulting in a greater risk of being diagnosed at a later, more advanced, stage of disease.

Continued Need in Oklahoma

The Affordable Care Act will provide women with greater access to preventive cancer screenings and treatment;however gaps will still remain for women who are uninsured or underinsured. Since Oklahoma will not be participating in the Medicaid expansion, 82,000 women are being denied access to affordable health care coverage options. Women diagnosed with cancer through Take Charge gain eligibility for comprehensive treatment services through the state Medicaid program and ACS CAN encourages policy makers to protect, preserve and maintain eligibility for this life-saving screening and treatment program.

Maintaining funding for Take Charge will preserve a critical safety net for thousands of Oklahoma women, who will continue to lack access to essential screening, diagnostic and treatment services in 2016 and beyond.

Increase the Investment to Save More Lives

Oklahoma’s Breast and Cervical Cancer Screening Program Take Charge provides free pap tests and mammograms to women aged 50 to 64 who are uninsured or underinsured and have income below 185% of the federal poverty line.

  • From 2009-2014, more than 15,700 Oklahoma women were served by the program.
  • From 2009-2014, the program detected 68 breast cancers and 174 cervical cancers or cancer precursor lesions.

ACS CAN recognizes the enormous impact Take Charge has delivered in saving the lives of low-income, uninsured and underinsured women diagnosed with breast and cervical cancer. The proven success of this early detection program demands state funding levels that will provide access to these services for all eligible women.

Maintaining dedicated state funding for breast and cervical cancer screenings for low income, uninsured or underinsured women through Take Charge is vital to expand the capacity of the screening program so that no woman is denied these life-saving services.