CDC Cuts Program Funding Over Lack of Data
CDC cut funding to California's Every Woman Counts program because of concern that some low-income women who received breast and cervical cancer screenings were not receiving adequate follow-up care, the Sacramento Bee reports (Benson, Sacramento Bee, 7/28).
California lost $2.65 million in federal funding for a breast and cervical cancer screening program for uninsured women because it did not report data to CDC correctly (California Healthline, 6/19).
CDC wrote in a June 8 letter to the Department of Health Services that officials "have significant concerns" about the "program's current ability to provide quality screening and follow-up services to women."
According to CDC data on the program:
- 37% of women who tested positive for cervical cancer did not receive a complete diagnostic evaluation;
- 15% of women who tested positive for breast cancer did not get a complete diagnostic evaluation;
- 31% of women who tested positive for cervical cancer did not begin treatment; and
- 23% of women who tested positive for breast cancer did not begin treatment.
Kevin Reilly, deputy director of prevention services at DHS, said that all medical case files for the program were reviewed and that the state verified diagnosis and treatment of all women who tests indicated might have cancer.
Reilly said reporting problems happened often if a woman received follow-up treatment from a different doctor than the one who conducted the initial screening. He added that DHS is working more closely with clinics to emphasize the importance of keeping accurate records.
California is the only state to be sanctioned for not keeping accurate data. CDC is scheduled to review the program in September (Sacramento Bee, 7/28). This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.