Miss. state representative battles breast cancer and beats it
PINE BELT, Miss. (WDAM) - Four years ago, state representative Omeria Scott says she knew something was wrong when she discovered a large lump in her left breast.
“I woke up April 21st, that Friday morning, and I thought that I was lying on the remote…,” Scott said. “I looked for it and couldn’t find it. And, you know, I turned back over again, and I felt something large on my arm and I thought that it was the remote. But then I located the remote and I still felt it and I said, ‘Oh my God, this is a lump.’”
She had stage three triple negative breast cancer.
“I don’t think I heard anything else that they said after they said the word cancer to me,” Scott said.
Scott says she had been getting yearly mammograms which is in part why the news came as such a big shock. However, she didn’t know her breast tissue required her to have more extensive tests.
“I was having the mammograms… but the tissue was dense,” Scott said. “In Mississippi, we do not pay for those more extensive tests… I needed an MRI, or I needed an ultrasound. I needed a more extensive diagnostic test because I have dense breast tissue.”
After six months of chemotherapy, a surgery in which her left breast and 15 lymph nodes were removed, then six weeks of radiation and physical therapy... she found out she was cancer free on her 61st birthday, and once again tuned everything else out.
“After I heard ‘cure’ I basically didn’t, you know, hear anything else,” Scott said.
She’s in remission, but her battle with breast cancer continues in a different light.
If you think Scott’s name sounds familiar, it’s because she serves in the 80th district for the Mississippi House of Representatives. The district represents parts of Jones and Jasper counties, among others.
Scott says healthcare has been part of her focus since elected in 1992.
“When we had the Mississippi State Charity Hospital here… I was one of the... activists that were out there trying to keep the hospital open…So, I understand why it’s critical, particularly for people of low/ moderate income to have affordable healthcare and accessibility to good healthcare,” Scott said.
She says it’s even more prevalent now.
“I do have a lot more interest in cancer and breast cancer in particular,” Scott said.
Stating she will continue fighting for it as she continues being a representative.
“That is one reason why we as women must advocate for more money to go into women’s research, but we also have to advocate for more insurance coverage for programs that affect women, in particular women with breast cancer,” Scott said.
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