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Question: I have been diagnosed with breast cancer and plan to have a mastectomy. How will the Women's Health and Cancer Rights Act (WHCRA) affect my benefits?
Answer: Under the Women's Health and Cancer Rights Act (WHCRA), group health plans, insurance companies and health maintenance organizations (HMOs) offering mastectomy coverage must also provide coverage for reconstructive surgery in a manner determined in consultation with the attending physician and the patient. Coverage includes reconstruction of the breast on which the mastectomy was performed, surgery and reconstruction of the other breast to produce a symmetrical appearance, and prostheses and treatment of physical complications at all stages of the mastectomy, including lymph edemas.