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Women's Health

The West Virginia Breast and Cervical Cancer Screening Program (WVBCCSP) is a comprehensive public health program that helps uninsured or underinsured women gain access to breast and cervical cancer screening services.  Screening and early detection reduces death rates, improves treatment options, and greatly increases survival.

The WVBCCSP provides clinical breast examinations (CBEs), mammograms, and Pap tests for eligible women, as well as diagnostic testing for women whose screening outcome is abnormal. Since Program inception in 1991, the WVBCCSP has enrolled 146,745 women and provided more than 2,800,000 Pap tests, 289,000 mammograms, and 302,000 breast exams.

While screening services are key to early detection, their existence alone is insufficient to achieve a reduction in the illness and death associated with these diseases. As required by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the WVBCCSP engages in the following activities in order to implement a comprehensive program: 

  • Program Management
  • Screening and Diagnostic Services
  • Education and Outreach
  • Partnership and Collaboration
  • Evaluation (Surveillance, Quality Assurance, and Technical Assistance)

The Impact of Breast and Cervical Cancer

In 2007, the American Cancer Society estimates that in the United States, 178,480 women will be diagnosed with invasive breast cancer and 40,460 women will die from the disease. During the same time period, 11,150 U.S. women will be diagnosed with invasive cervical cancer and 3,670 will die.

In West Virginia, the West Virginia Cancer Registry noted that from 1999-2003, breast cancer was the most commonly diagnosed cancer among West Virginia women and the leading cause of cancer-related deaths among West Virginia women aged 25 to 44 years. During the same time period, cervical cancer was the tenth most commonly diagnosed cancer among West Virginia women (third among women aged 25-44 years) and the third leading cause of cancer-related deaths among women 25-44 years.

Currently, mammography is the best method for early detection of breast cancer. Early detection not only increases a woman’s chance of survival, but also increases her treatment options. In terms of cervical cancer detection, research shows that if routine cervical screening (such as Pap tests) is followed, most cases of cervical cancer can be prevented.

Program Goals:

  • To ensure access to breast and cervical cancer screening services for all women who meet income, age and medical eligibility guidelines with an emphasis on older, minority and never or rarely screened women.
  • To ensure that all women screened by the WVBCCSP receive appropriate and timely follow-up, diagnosis, treatment, and case management.
  • To broaden statewide public education to promote breast and cervical cancer screening in West Virginia, with an emphasis on reducing morbidity and mortality from breast and cervical cancer by reaching target populations.
  • To determine the educational needs of health professionals involved with breast and cervical cancer screening and diagnosis.
  • To offer educational opportunities to health professionals involved with breast and cervical cancer screening.
  • To monitor and assess trends in breast and cervical cancer incidence, mortality and screening rates for West Virginia women in order to develop effective health promotion strategies.
  • To establish linkages and partnerships with a broad range of stakeholders to bring additional resources to the WVBCCSP.
  • To maintain and establish mechanisms through which the state can enhance quality assurance monitoring of screening procedures for breast and cervical cancer.
  • To provide access to full Medicaid benefits to women under age 65, with no credible insurance coverage, who are identified through the WVBCCSP and are in need of treatment for breast and cervical cancer or certain pre-cancerous conditions.

WVBCCSP Federal Funds (Title XV/CDC)

Purpose: Provide screening and referral services for the early detection of breast and cervical cancer with special emphasis on low income women, minorities, women with disabilities and women aged 50-64.

What is covered:

  • Breast Screening (including clinical breast examinations, mammography, ultrasounds, fine needle aspiration, surgical consultations and breast biopsies).
  • Cervical Screening (including pelvic examinations, Pap test, approved treatment medications, and colposcopy with cervical biopsy).


  • Income at or below 250% of the Federal Poverty Level
  • Uninsured or underinsured
  • 25-64 years of age (certain procedures have different age requirements)

Diagnostic and Treatment Fund (WV Legislature/State Funding)

Purpose: Provide West Virginia residents who are medically indigent diagnostic services necessary to determine whether or not they have breast or cervical cancer.

What is covered:

  • General anesthesia (for diagnostic breast or cervical procedure)
  • LEEP (loop electrode excisional procedure)
  • Biopsy of excision of cervical lesion
  • Endocervical curettage
  • Cryocautery of cervix
  • Laser surgery of cervix
  • Conization of cervix with or without repair
  • Conization with LEEP
  • Dilation and curettage


  • Income at or below 250% of the Federal Poverty Level guidelines
  • Uninsured
  • 0-64 years of age
  • WV resident

Medicaid Treatment Act (Title XIX/Centers for Medicaid/Medicare/BMS)

Purpose: Provide Medicaid benefits to uninsured women diagnosed with breast and/or cervical cancer and/or certain pre-cancerous conditions, while they are receiving treatment.

What is covered:

Medicaid benefits cover any and all needed medical services specified as a covered benefit by West Virginia Medicaid.


  • WVBCCSP enrollee (may be enrolled before or after diagnosis)
  • Under age 65
  • Diagnosed with breast or cervical cancer and/or certain pre-cancerous conditions and in need of medical treatment
  • Uninsured or otherwise lacking credible coverage
  • West Virginia resident (income is not a factor)

Need Insurance?

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