Novato Community Hospital proposes to offer Breast Health Scholarships to cover cancer screening for low-income women in our community. While the California state-funded Every Woman Counts program allows coverage for basic diagnostic care, and more women than ever now have access to life-saving screenings, MRIs and other advanced diagnostic procedures continue to be excluded from coverage, despite the distinct benefits they provide for women who are either at high risk for breast cancer or who have already received a cancer diagnosis.
Following a successful 2015 Capital Campaign to raise funds to bring 3D Tomosynthesis to Marin County, Novato Community Hospital now advocates creating a $50,000 Breast Health Scholarship Fund to provide gap funding for women without the means to pay, women under the age of 40 with a positive diagnosis, and women who do not otherwise qualify for financial assistance for breast cancer diagnosis and treatment under California law. Last year, Novato Community Hospital provided 5,372 mammograms, which resulted in a positive biopsy rate for 1,411 women (26%). The Scholarship Fund would allow uninsured and underinsured women to apply for financial aid to receive the crucial care they need.