Proposal seeks to increase awareness of dense breast tissue

04172018CM0802A measure sponsored by State Senator John G. Mulroe (D-Chicago) to notify women if they have dense breast tissue advanced out of the Senate today.

“We know that early detection of breast cancer can save lives,” Mulroe said. “This legislation is designed to empower women to talk to their doctors about additional preventative measures.”

Senate Bill 2442 requires every mammography service provider to inform patients if they have dense breast tissue and provide information on the related risk factors. Because dense breast tissue and cancer cells can appear similarly on mammograms, it can be more difficult to detect cancer when dense tissue is present.

Senate Bill 2442 passed the Senate today with a bipartisan vote of 53-0. It now advances to the House for further consideration.

Category: News Releases

03132018CM0273Illinois State Police and state conservation officers could join local police in enforcing Illinois’ anti-smoking laws.

A measure sponsored by Senator John G. Mulroe (D-Chicago) expands the number of law enforcement agencies that can enforce the state’s prohibition on smoking inside public buildings, vehicles, places of employment and within 15 feet of building entrances.

“Secondhand smoke has serious public health consequences, which is why Illinois barred smoking in public places years ago,” Mulroe said. “Despite efforts to raise awareness, people continue to flout the law and smoke where they please. It’s time to strengthen enforcement efforts on behalf of everyone who doesn’t want to inhale poison.”

The Smoke Free Illinois Act took effect on Jan. 1, 2008. It allows local law enforcement to cite individuals who violate the act by smoking inside public buildings, within 15 feet of building entrances and within public vehicles.

Senate Bill 2514 passed the Senate 54-0 today. It now heads to the House for further consideration.

Category: News Releases

Proposal would provide $5,000 property tax exemption for disabled police and firefighters

Officer Mullen testifies before the Senate Executive Committee

SPRINGFIELD – While working as a tactical officer in Rogers Park in 1996, Officer Jim Mullen responded to a “shots fired” call. The suspect was shooting at passing “L” trains from his back porch. While leaving the scene after unsuccessfully entering the offender’s apartment, the offender fired two shots, and one hit Officer Mullen in the face.

“I was an instant ventilator-dependent quadriplegic,” Mullen said in a committee hearing last week. “This is not something you plan for, or can even fathom. It’s been a difficult and devastating injury for me and my family, and a lot of other first responders like myself.”

State Senator John G. Mulroe (D-Chicago) introduced Senate Bill 3197 to support disabled police officers and firefighters like Officer Mullen. Under his proposal, disabled police officers, disabled firefighters and their families would receive a $5,000 homestead exemption.

“I’ve known Jim for a long time,” Mulroe said. “His story as well as the incident with Commander Bauer inspired me to bring forward this bill. This legislation would not only help officers who are injured or killed in the line of duty, but it would also help their families.”

The exemption would carry over to the surviving spouse if the spouse holds the legal or beneficial title to the home, permanently resides in that home and does not remarry. Such an exemption would only apply if the home’s equalized assessed value is less than $250,000.

“This is a modest effort to show officers and firefighters who risk their lives for us every day how much we appreciate them and their work,” Mulroe said.

The legislation passed out of the Senate Executive Committee last week.

 

Category: News Releases

Proposal would require dense breast tissue notifications


Advocates testify befroe the Senate Public Health CommitteeSPRINGFIELD – Women would have access to vital medical information that could increase early breast cancer detection rates under legislation sponsored by State Senator John G. Mulroe.

Senate Bill 2442 requires every mammography service provider to inform patients if they have dense breast tissue and provide information on the related risk factors. Dense breast tissue and cancer cells can appear similarly on mammograms, making detection more difficult.

“By informing women if they have dense breast tissue, they will be able to consult with their doctors about additional preventative measures,” said Mulroe (D-Chicago). “It’s important for women to have all the facts. This is one more way we’re working to ensure that women find out if they are at risk of breast cancer sooner.”

The measure advanced out of the Senate Public Health Committee this week. It has bipartisan support in the legislature and the backing of advocates and medical professionals.

“Senate Bill 2442 would ensure that every woman in Illinois would be notified if they have dense breast tissue and made aware of their options to conduct additional exams along with their yearly mammogram,” said Patti Beyer, cancer survivor and advocate from Glenview.

Senator Mulroe with Patti Beyer and Dr. Spear“Dense breast tissue masks cancers in mammograms, allowing diagnosis to be delayed until after it advances into a life-threatening, late-stage cancer. This legislation would give every woman the opportunity for an early-stage diagnosis.”

The legislation would have a great effect on women’s health, said Dr. Georgia Giakoumis Spear, section chief of breast imaging at NorthShore University HealthSystem and assistant professor of radiology at the University of Chicago.

“As a radiologist, I see the impact of breast density in my practice every day. Nearly half of women we screen have dense breast tissue. Breast density can make it more difficult to detect breast cancer and elevate a woman’s risk for developing breast cancer,” she said.

“This legislation would serve to educate and inform women in the state of Illinois of their breast density in order to achieve their best chances for early detection of breast cancer.”

Senate Bill 2442 is not the first piece of legislation to reduce breast cancer that Mulroe has worked on. He also sponsored legislation that became law in 2016 ensuring 3D mammograms are covered by insurance in Illinois.

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Category: News Releases

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