On Tuesday Angelina Jolie made headlines when she revealed in a New York Times opinion piece that she had a double mastectomy after discovering that she had a rare gene, the BRCA1 that increased her risk of getting breast and ovarian cancer.
According to Jolie, whose mother died of cancer at age 56 after a ten year battle with the disease, her risk factor of getting cancer before the surgery was 87% and after the surgery was reduced to less than 5%. She wrote the op-ed piece to encourage other women to take the blood test to find out if they have this genetic mutation and then take action. (Source: NY Times: My Medical Choice)
I think it was a brave choice she made to have the preventative surgery and then to write about it.
Breast cancer affects hundreds of thousands of people each year. The blood test she took costs approximately $3,000 and it depends on your insurance if the test is covered or not. This makes me angry.
If breast cancer and/or ovarian cancer runs in your family, why wouldn’t the insurance company pay for the blood test? Wouldn’t it be better to do something preventative, like remove the risk, then allow cancer to occur, wrecking lives and increasing medical costs?
What are your thoughts on this?
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