Bill seeks more HPV coverage

State News

By Marissa Cumbers (Last updated: 21 hours ago)
February 22, 2010

New legislation proposed in a Michigan Senate committee would require health insurance providers to cover testing for human papillomavirus, or HPV.

Insurance providers would be required to cover the HPV test, which exposes a virus that is linked to cervical cancer, under a two-bill package sponsored by state Sen. Martha Scott, D-Highland Park.

“Women are dying before their time because they can’t have this test,” Scott said.

Most insurance plans include coverage of a Pap test to test for signs of cervical cancer and this legislation would require the HPV test to be included with that, Scott said.

“We know just the Pap smear is not enough and (because) we know something, we need to try and save these lives of these women,” she said.

The bill was referred to the Senate Economic Development and Regulatory Reform Committee in early February but hasn’t yet been scheduled in committee.

Committee Chairman state Sen. Alan Sanborn, R-Richmond Township, said including HPV testing on all plans takes away an individual’s ability to choose a plan tailored to their needs or situation.

“My primary concern is that the bill would force all Michigan residents with health insurance, whether through their employer or through the individual market, to purchase coverage for this screening, regardless of their age, gender or specific health situation,” he said in an e-mail.

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Insurance companies covering HPV screening is a good thing – if they do not recommend the vaccine.  If they start covering the vaccine – then they have to cover the cost of adverse reactions.  Of course, that is my humble opinion.

PG

Author: Leslie Carol Botha

Author, publisher, radio talk show host and internationally recognized expert on women's hormone cycles. Social/political activist on Gardasil the HPV vaccine for adolescent girls. Co-author of "Understanding Your Mood, Mind and Hormone Cycle." Honorary advisory board member for the Foundation for the Study of Cycles and member of the Society for Menstrual Cycle Research.