The Women’s Health and Cancer Rights Act of 1998

This federal act requires that all group health plans or individual insurance contracts that provide medical and surgical benefits must follow the federal guidelines below when one of their subscribers needs a mastectomy

  1. Subscriber insurance companies must pay for reconstruction of the breast on which the mastectomy has been performed.
  2. They must provide for the surgery and reconstruction of the other breast to produce a symmetrical appearance.

They must provide for prostheses and treatment of physical complications of all stages of mastectomy, including lymphedema ,and the assessment to see if the cancer has spread.


Lymphedema: swelling related to surgical removal of lymph nodes during mastectomy in order to stage the cancer

Mastectomy: surgical removal of breast usually due to cancer

“Breast Self-Examination” – 1:32 minutes

“Understanding Menopause” – 3:17 minutes

“Women’s Heart Attack Symptoms”- 1:20 minutes


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