About 250 Hoosier women are diagnosed with cervical cancer each year, and about 85 die from the disease.
Those numbers have remained stagnant in Indiana, despite advances in prevention and screening. Republican Reps. Sharon Negele and Holli Sullivan filed a bill to address this.
Negele says the proposal would require the Indiana State Department of Health to develop a plan identifying barriers and crafting recommendations to reduce the number of deaths.
“If passed this legislation would require ISDH to submit a report outlining their strategic plan to the Governor and the General Assembly by 2018,” says Negele.
Bryan Hannon says Indiana needs better public health policies to address cervical cancer deaths.
“This is something that we know we can tackle,” says Hannon. “The CDC has found that 90 percent of these cases are often preventable, if we do the right things.”
In 2012, Indiana ranked 48th in the nation for the percentage of women who received a pap smear in the recommended previous three years.