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Breast and cervical cancer project to be expanded to help more Ohio women

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New dollars in the state's two-year budget allow that expansion.

A federal program that has provided breast and cervical cancer screenings for low-income women is getting a boost from new dollars in the state’s two-year budget. The Ohio Department of Health has budgeted a total of $1,481,000 to pay for screening and diagnostic services ($968,000 in federal CDC grant funds, and $513,000 in GRF funds). The General Assembly appropriated $100,000 more, which will be used for case management and navigation services.

The additional funding provides public dollars for treatment when cancer is discovered by doctors who didn’t participate in the project, such as at traveling clinics. Lou Almeida with the Ohio Chapter of the American Cancer Society’s Cancer Action Network says he’s hoping that will convince more women to take advantage of the program.

“Right now, on an annual basis, about 7,000 women in Ohio utilize the program but nearly 80,000 women are eligible for the project,” Almeida says.

Almeida says mammography rates declined by 70% during the pandemic. He’s hoping the expansion will increase the number of women getting early detection and early treatment.

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