P.O. Box 12068, State Capitol
Austin, Texas 78711
Tel. (512) 463-0112
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 5, 2002
AUSTIN - Senator Jane Nelson, R-Lewisville, and other women's health advocates throughout the state are praising Governor Perry for securing funds for breast & cervical cancer services as part of his health plan for Texas.
"This is a major victory in the fight against breast & cervical cancer," Senator Nelson, author of the legislation enabling these services, said. "Early intervention is the key to fighting these terrible diseases, and Governor Perry's actions will help save lives and give hope to women who desperately need it."
Currently there are few options for breast & cervical cancer screenings or early treatment under Medicaid, leaving many disadvantaged women to fend for themselves in the critical early stages of the disease. SB 532 by Nelson will make these services more accessible by relaxing eligibility requirements.
It appeared that SB 532 would go unfunded until last week when Governor Perry directed the Department of Health & Human Services to find $1.1 million for these services -- a move that will draw down more than $3 million in federal matching funds.
"This has been an incredible effort on the part of Governor Perry and Senator Nelson," said Dr. Lawrence Frankel, an oncologist & President of the Texas Division of the American Cancer Society. "To increase our ability to diagnose early and treat early is truly a tremendous step forward."