3D mammography to be covered by insurance

mulroe 3d passedSPRINGFIELD – Thanks to new screening methods such as tomosynthesis, breast cancer occurrences have been steadily decreasing since the early 2000s. A new law sponsored by Senator John Mulroe (D-Chicago) adding the screening method to the list of covered low-dose screenings was signed today by the governor.

“This is a medically proven screening method that increases detection rates and because of its sensitivity, helps reduce unnecessary call backs during an already stressful time,” Mulroe said. “It is a good practice to keep the medical industry moving forward when the technology is available.”

Previous technologies only took a single dimension view of breast tissue when screening for cancerous cells. Tomosynthesis, also known as a 3D mammogram, takes a multidimensional view of the breast during the screening. As a result, a 3D mammogram has a higher success rate of detecting cancerous cells that are often difficult to detect, due to either size or dense breast tissue.

Senate Bill 54 amends the insurance code by adding tomosynthesis to the list of definitions of low-dose mammograms. As a result, the insurance mandate will cover 3D mammograms as well as the traditional 2D mammograms.

“This law will not only help save lives of at-risk women who may not have known about this technology or may not have been previously covered, but also save them from additional stress and discomfort,” Mulroe said. “It is our duty to protect the health and well-being of people in this state, and if we can save them time, money and emotional hardship then that is a bonus.”

The law becomes effective July 1, 2016.

Two new Mulroe laws seek to address O’Hare noise problem

mulroe ohare signedSPRINGFIELD – The number of runways allotted to O’Hare International Airport is officially raised from eight to ten thanks to a proposal introduced in the Senate by State Senator John Mulroe (D-Chicago). The measure was signed into law by the governor today.

“We wanted to get the FAA and the City of Chicago to engage us in the conversation about the ill effect the noise was having on residents in my and others’ districts,” Mulroe said. “It had become clear to us that the noise problem greatly escalated following the completion of the O’Hare Modernization Program.”

The O’Hare Modernization Act was passed in 2000 with the intention of increasing efficiency and safety of the airport by adding multiple parallel runways to accommodate the greater number of East-West travelers. The number of noise complaints in January 2015 was 39,500, whereas the number of complaints the previous January was 1,357 prior to the opening of a new parallel East-West runway.

The language of the new law would allow O’Hare to keep the existing runways intact, including the existing diagonal runways, which allowed air traffic to be more evenly distributed. During the passage of this bill and a companion proposal, the City of Chicago began to decommission one of the diagonal runways leading to the issuance of a Memorandum of Understanding between all involved parties delaying any further work until previously agreed upon open house meetings with the public are held.

“The goal was to involve the community and hopefully address some of the very real concerns that people are having about the noise levels and the decreasing property values,” Mulroe said. “While it is unfortunate that the decommissioning process began prior to these meetings being held, I am optimistic that all involved parties will be able to walk away at the end of this process satisfied.”

Under the new law, more families would be eligible for soundproofing. The law becomes effective January 1, 2016.

Sex trafficking victims protected by Mulroe Senate measure

mulroe-traffickingSPRINGFIELD – Victims of human trafficking can now receive newfound protections under a proposed law sponsored by Senator John Mulroe (D-Chicago), which was signed into law by the governor today.

Senate Bill 1588 provides victims of sex trafficking with an affirmative defense when charged with prostitution. By using an affirmative defense, the legal ramifications of criminal charges would be defeated by that action. Under the current law, a person who knowingly performs any sexual act in return for something of value is guilty of prostitution, which holds a Class A misdemeanor, punishable by up to a year in jail and/or a fine of $2,500.

“Imagine living in a dark and heart-breaking world that traps you in a terrible cycle you did not choose, and then you are charged as a criminal, adding insult to injury,” said Mulroe. “By allowing for this affirmative defense, these women will get their lives back on track and live healthier and more fulfilling lives, and hopefully serve justice to the real criminals in these cases.”

Janell Wheeler testified in the Senate Criminal Law Committee that while she was a victim of human trafficking, her pimp ruptured her eardrum, burned her body and beat her until she suffered broken bones. All the while, this man forced her to sell her body, for which she was arrested and faced criminal charges.

“I want to make sure that we are helping these people, not incarcerating them,” Mulroe said.

The proposal passed both chambers of the General Assembly with overwhelming support. It becomes effective January 1, 2016.

Senator Mulroe discusses Wednesday’s budget override vote

mulroe-71515SPRINGFIELD – Illinois State Police, the Illinois Department of Aging, the Illinois Department of Public Health and other vital state personnel would continue to be funded not just for this month, but for the entire year under votes Senator John Mulroe (D-Chicago) cast at the Capitol on Wednesday.

“Protecting the public is obviously a top priority for Illinois. Today, I voted to make sure State Police, the Illinois National Guard, our elderly and other emergency service agencies have the resources they need to do their crucial jobs,” said Mulroe.

State lawmakers approved a state budget earlier this year. But Gov. Bruce Rauner chose to reject the entire budget, with the exception of the K-12 education budget. Rather than use his authority to make changes to parts he disagreed with, he unilaterally rejected the entire budget. The result is a budget deadlock at the Capitol that threatens to shut down services and leave key personnel unpaid.

Mulroe joined his Senate colleagues in sending a one-month, emergency budget to the governor’s desk in an effort to keep key the State Police and other emergency personnel and agencies open and functioning. He then went a step further and voted for a proposal to maintain that funding for the entire year.

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