The US Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee has passed the Eliminate Colorectal Cancer Act (S.710), legislation introduced by Sen. Jesse Helms (R-NC) and Sen. Edward M. Kennedy (D-Mass). The bill, with the companion HR 1520 being mulled by the US House of Representatives, would require all private health insurance plans to cover colon cancer screening according to scientific guidelines for patients age 50 and over and for others at high risk of developing the disease.
In a statement, the American Cancer Society noted, "It is up to Congress to ensure that the barriers to life-saving colon cancer screenings tests are removed. . . The bottom line is that this Act can help prolong lives and prevent the pain and anguish cancer causes."