Amendment Would “Seriously Erode Patient Protections Vital to the Breast Cancer Community”

DALLAS – April 28, 2017 –The nation’s largest breast cancer organization is urging breast cancer patients, survivors and advocates to ask their congressional representatives to oppose an amendment that would seriously erode patient protections vital to the breast cancer community and add significant economic burdens on women and men already facing a fight for their lives.

“We are urging anyone who has been affected by breast cancer, either directly or in support of their friends and their loved ones, to call their congressional representatives – today – and ask them to vote against the MacArthur Amendment to the proposed American Health Care Act (AHCA),” said Komen interim president and CEO Ellen Willmott. “This amendment and the AHCA itself create significant economic burdens and uncertainty for people who are already suffering enough from a breast cancer diagnosis.”

The MacArthur Amendment, introduced this week, enables states to opt out of current federal pre-existing condition requirements, and instead allows insurers to charge these patients significantly higher premiums if they experience a temporary gap in coverage. It also allows states to eliminate federal guarantees of essential health services, such as breast cancer screenings.

“Komen and our advocates have worked for years to ensure that all people facing breast cancer can receive timely, quality care, covered by insurance. This amendment would create a perverse incentive for states to race to the bottom in an effort to lower their costs and premiums for the healthy, while leaving the most economically and medically vulnerable behind. On behalf of the women and men we serve who are fighting to survive, we will do everything in our power to prevent that,” Willmott said.

Komen’s Advocacy Team issued these guidelines for supporters:

  • Call the U.S. Capitol switchboard: (202) 224-3121, provide your address and ask to be connected with your Representative’s office.  Once you reach a staff person or voicemail system:
    • Request that the Representative vote AGAINST the MacArthur Amendment
    • Convey that these changes would increase the number of uninsured, decrease federal protections for people with pre-existing conditions and cut Medicaid
    • Tell the office that as a constituent and breast cancer survivor/activist, these provisions are important for the women and men Komen serves in your state.

 About Susan G. Komen®
Susan G. Komen is the world’s largest breast cancer organization, funding more breast cancer research than any other nonprofit outside of the federal government while providing real-time help to those facing the disease. Komen has set a Bold Goal to reduce the current number of breast cancer deaths by 50 percent in the U.S. by 2026. Since its founding in 1982, Komen has funded more than $920 million in research and provided more than $2 billion in funding to screening, education, treatment and psychosocial support programs serving millions of people in more than 30 countries worldwide. Komen was founded by Nancy G. Brinker, who promised her sister, Susan G. Komen, that she would end the disease that claimed Suzy’s life. That promise has become Komen’s promise to all people facing breast cancer. Visit or call 1-877 GO KOMEN. Connect with us on social at