When done properly, the exam is a rigorous procedure in which a health-care provider looks for changes in size or shape and uses the pads of her fingers to detect any lumps in the breast or underarm area. Although it's considered part of a routine medical checkup, many doctors say they can't afford to spend the 6 to 10 minutes required for a thorough evaluation -- especially when they're not reimbursed for it.
The bill, which the Senate sent to the governor on a 52-0 vote, takes away that excuse. It also requires state health officials to spell out for the first time what constitutes a comprehensive breast exam and to inform women of their right to it.
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