Mulroe law increases awareness, access to 3D mammograms

Mulroe-3DtomocoachA new public health measure was signed into law on Friday that will increase awareness of a live-saving new medical tool: 3D mammograms.

The law, sponsored in the Illinois Senate by John G. Mulroe (D-10), requires the Illinois Department of Public Health to include information on the newest form of breast cancer detection in their pamphlets. That new form of breast cancer detection is 3D mammography.

3D mammography is a relatively new technology that is able to more quickly and accurately detect breast cancer, especially among women who have dense breast tissue.

“Lives will be saved by making information on this technology available,” said Mulroe, who is Chairman of the Senate Public Health Committee. “Women, especially those with dense breast tissue, will receive more accurate results from this kind of mammogram and will have fewer instances of return visits and unnecessary biopsies.”

Experts believe 40 percent of women in the United States have dense breast tissue.  Because dense breast tissue can make cancerous masses more difficult to detect on a regular 2D mammogram, this new law will give women important information about alternative mammogram options if they have dense breast tissue.

“The earlier that we can detect breast cancer, the better a woman’s chance of survival,” Mulroe said. “Knowledge that this technology is available will give women the option for cleaner and more accurate screenings. It will also reduce retesting and callbacks and the anxiety associated with them.”

In addition to sponsoring this new law in the Senate, Mulroe has also held a hearing to inform the Public Health Committee and members of the Senate about the benefits of 3D mammography for women with dense breast tissue and the locations of hospitals throughout Illinois that provide the new technology. Mulroe is also working on legislation that will require Illinois’ health insurers to cover 3-D mammograms.

“Every woman in our state deserves affordable access to the best breast cancer screening tools available,” Mulroe said.

The new law will go into effect January 1, 2015.

Sen. John G. Mulroe


10th District

Years served: 2010 - 2019

Committee assignments: Commerce and Economic Development; Criminal Law; Executive; Insurance (Vice-Chairperson); Judiciary (Chairperson); Public Health; Subcommittee on Const. Amendments.

Biography: Born July 21, 1959, in Chicago; BBA, accounting, Loyola University; J.D., Loyola University School of Law; member of Chicago and Illinois State Bar associations; full-time attorney; former assistant state's attorney and arbitrator for Cook County; certified public accountant; married (wife, Margaret), four children.

Associated Representative:
Robert Martwick
Michael P. McAuliffe