A new law sponsored by Democratic state Sen. Laura Murphy of Des Plaines requires insurance companies to cover an MRI if a patient is diagnosed with dense breast tissue, which can be an indicator of cancer.
"Early detection is a key element in the fight against breast cancer," Murphy said in a news release. "By requiring insurance companies to cover MRIs in patients with dense breast tissue, we are arming doctors with another tool to help them detect breast cancer sooner."
Studies show that dense breast tissue can be up to six times more likely to develop cancer. An MRI can find an additional 8 percent of breast cancers that go undetected by mammograms and ultrasounds.
Linda Joseph, the constituent who encouraged Murphy to sponsor the legislation, thanked her. "It is all about educating women about their breast health and being their own advocate."
The law goes into effect on Jan. 1.