Rep. Payne, Jr.’s Colorectal Cancer Screening Bill Passed in House

February 28, 2020
Press Release

Media Contact:  Patrick Wright   --  Patrick.Wright@mail.house.gov

Washington, D.C. — Congressman Donald M. Payne, Jr. was delighted today when the U.S. House of Representatives passed his Removing Barriers to Colorectal Cancer Screening Act (H.R. 1570) again.  The bill would completely cover the cost for Medicare recipients when polyps are removed during routine colorectal cancer screenings, called colonoscopies.  Currently, patients could receive a surprise charge for the removals, which can cost thousands of dollars.

Congressman Payne, Jr. said his bill is necessary to remove the financial fears and stigmas related to colonoscopies.

“Too many people are afraid to get routine colonoscopies because their insurance would only cover the screening and not the polyp removal,” said Congressman Donald M. Payne, Jr.  “This bill would require Medicare to cover those removals and improve the health and well-being of millions of Americans.  I have fought for seven years to get this bill passed.  I want to thank my colleagues in the House again for supporting it.”    

The House passed the bill as part of the Protecting American Lungs and Reversing the Youth Tobacco Epidemic Act (H.R. 2339).  That bill would ban companies from making or selling all flavored tobacco products, require stores to remove flavored e-cigarette products from their shelves within 30 days, and make it illegal to promote e-cigarettes to people under 21 years old.  Also, it would extend current restrictions on the marketing and advertising of cigarettes and smokeless tobacco to e-cigarettes.

Colorectal cancer is the second leading cause of cancer deaths for men and women nationwide.  This year alone, roughly 53,000 people will die from it.  But if it is caught early, the five-year survival rate from the disease is 90 percent.  The fight against colorectal cancer is one of the Congressman’s top priorities since his father, Congressman Donald M. Payne, Sr. died of colorectal cancer in 2012.   

# # # #