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Mailbag: Hope Wyden will support legislation

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As someone who has lost several family members, I know the importance of diagnosing cancer early.

Unfortunately, many cancers lack screening, leading them to be detected at later stages, when treatments are limited.

Thanks to innovative technology, companies are rolling out new blood tests that can detect multiple cancers earlier — and that can be used to complement existing early-detection tests.

Screening for multiple cancers at once could improve treatment outcomes and save lives. It’s critical that insurance covers these tests once they are Food and Drug Administration-approved.

As an American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network volunteer, I just met virtually with Sen. Wyden’s office to urge Congress to make cancer a national priority. Congress is considering legislation to create a pathway for Medicare coverage of these new tests once they are approved. I hope Sen. Wyden will support these efforts so Medicare recipients can access new, innovative screening options.

Almost 24,800 Oregonians will be diagnosed with cancer this year. Another 8,430 residents will die of it. Many of these deaths could be prevented with early detection, and I hope Sen. Wyden supports these efforts.

Sam Blankenship

Lebanon

 

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