Rep. Ayana Pressley is challenging the healthcare system and putting a new bill into play that she created. Pressley’s announcement of the bill requires that Medicare pays for wigs for those experiencing hair loss due to a disease or medical treatments.
The Massachusetts rep who struggles with autoimmune disease causing alopecia says, “It’s so much more than cosmetic, it takes a real toll.” Pressley also said, “Every person living with alopecia, battling cancer, or facing another medical condition that leads to hair loss, should be able to access wigs and other head coverings,” she said. “Our bill is responsive and sends a powerful message to these communities: we see you, you belong, and you deserve to be treated with dignity and respect.”
Pressley is not the only one in support of the bill. Massachusetts House delegation colleague Rep. James McGovern is also for and was the first to introduce it back in 2018. In an interview with Vanity Fair he talks about his 20-year-old daughter who suffers from a rare cancer diagnosis. “The thing she’s most worried about is having to go through chemotherapy,” he said. “Losing your hair at 20 — that’s really kind of a traumatic thing.”
If the bill is passed, it would “recategorize cranial prosthetics”, which is the formal term for medical wigs, and classify them as durable medical equipment, making them eligible for coverage under the Social Security Act.