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What will the cost of supplemental screening tests be to my patient and to the healthcare system?


The California legislature did not mandate insurance coverage for any supplemental breast cancer screening tests. Currently, there are no insurance billing codes for screening breast ultrasound or tomosynthesis. Screening breast MRI is usually covered for high risk women, but may not be for women at average risk who simply have dense breasts. As such, women who desire certain types of supplemental screening may be asked to pay out of pocket.

From a societal perspective, supplemental screening of the approximately 50 percent of California women with dense breasts would result in very substantial additional cost to the health care system.