Mayor Rahm Emanuel is planning to expand access to mammograms for low-income women.
Though some financial experts wanted the mayor to privatize the city's program for providing the exams, the mayor has elected instead to spend more money to try to fix the troubled program, which had been criticized for allegedly not referring women with abnormal screenings for further tests soon enough and for having unqualified personnel performing the mammograms.
Emanuel pledged Wednesday to spend $200,000 more in city money next year to address the various concerns and expand the program.
"It's all about access," the mayor said during an appearance at Roseland Community Hospital. "It is one of the few cancers which, if you diagnose it early enough, you can actually deal with it. And it is essential that we give people here in the community and the surrounding area access immediately."
The program will continue to be run by the city Public Health Department, despite concerns about the staffing. Anne Marie Murphy, executive director of the Metropolitan Chicago Breast Cancer Task Force, praised the city for increasing funding, but encouraged the Public Health Department "to continue to look for mammography experts" to run the program and said her non-profit agency will continue to work with the department "on quality improvement."
SOURCE: Chicago Tribune