- Associated Press - Sunday, January 7, 2018

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) - A top Rhode Island lawmaker says making sure that insurance covers all costs for a mastectomy is a top priority this year.

Democratic House Majority Leader Joseph Shekarchi says he has already introduced a bill to mandate coverage. The General Assembly’s legislative session began Jan. 2.

Shekarchi says state law mandated insurance coverage for mastectomies in 2005, but insurers have since instituted high co-pays and deductibles.

He says breast cancer survivors have had to pay for necessary medical supplies after the surgery.

He wants insurers to cover all costs, without co-pays and deductibles.

Shekarchi introduced a similar measure late in the session last year. He says 40 co-sponsors signed on, including every female representative, despite the late introduction.

He says he introduced it immediately to show it’s a top priority.

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