Congressman Ayanna Pressley desires Medicare to cowl wigs
TSR Politics: Congresswoman Ayanna Pressley represents not only her Massachusetts Congressional District, but the 7 million people who live with alopecia in this country.
This is why the state official is campaigning for Medicare to cover wigs. “[I know what it’s like] experiencing a transformation that you did not choose yourself, ”said Pressley Vanity fair from her living with alopecia, an autoimmune disease that causes hair loss.
“When you feel like your body is cheating on you and you feel less like yourself, that’s a challenge,” said Pressley, but “balding as a woman really disrupts conventional and societal norms of what is appropriate what is professional, what is “attractive, what is feminine,” she said. “It’s so much more than just cosmetics … it takes a real toll.”
Ayanna, along with her Massachusetts colleague James McGovern, reintroduced a bill on Thursday on the last day of Alopecia Awareness Month to pay for wigs for those who are experiencing hair loss due to medical treatments or illnesses, reports The Root.
Ayanna says many people living with alopecia – which has no known cause or cure – are looking for medicinal wigs to help manage their hair loss. But medical wigs are usually not an affordable option for people living on a steady income, according to Ayanna.
“Doctors told me that patients turned down life-saving cancer treatments because they were afraid of losing their hair and didn’t know how to deal with it,” said McGovern.
McGovern speaks from his own experience, which is why the topic is close to his heart.
McGovern’s 20-year-old daughter, who is rarely diagnosed with cancer, is also struggling with hair loss.
“Her main concern is chemotherapy,” he said. “Losing your hair at 20 – that is really a traumatic thing.”
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