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Women's Wellness Connection Expands Eligibility For Free Screenings

The Targeted Outreach Program administered by Heart of the Rockies Regional Medical Center Foundation now offers free cervical cancer screening and diagnostic services to qualified women aged 21 through 64. The program is made available through the Women's Wellness Connection, a program of the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment.

"Many forms of cancer are preventable if women get screened early," said Brenda Gentile, HRRMC's community health worker. "This expansion of services by the Women's Wellness Connection will help young women who can least afford screening stay cancer-free."

Previously, eligibility for these services began at age 40. The Women's Wellness Connection is expanding eligibility, beginning January 1, 2017, to include younger women who may not have the income or insurance coverage to pay for these important screening services. To qualify for these free services, women must earn less than 250 percent of the federal poverty level, be in the United States legally, and either have no health insurance or have health insurance with high deductibles or copays.

Women are eligible for a number of diagnostic procedures. If women enrolled with the Women's Wellness Connection are diagnosed with cancer, most will qualify for treatment through Health First Colorado's Breast and Cervical Cancer Program.

The Targeted Outreach Program at HRRMC also offers free breast cancer screening for women ages 40 to 64 who meet the same eligibility requirements. Women can check eligibility and clinic locations at the or by calling Brenda Gentile at (719) 207-2088.

About 12,000 women are diagnosed every year in the United States with cervical cancer and approximately 4,000 women die of the disease, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Latinas and African-American women are at higher risk for developing and dying from cervical cancer. The Women's Wellness Connection provides free breast and cervical cancer screenings to eligible women at more than 120 locations. It is important to recognize during January-Cervical Health Awareness Month-that screening saves lives.