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Veep star Julia Louis-Dreyfus announces she has breast cancer

She tweeted, “1 in 8 women get breast cancer. Today, I’m the one.”

Julia Louis-Dreyfus, star of the hilarious, incredible Veep, on Thursday made a very serious announcement: She has breast cancer.

Louis-Dreyfus, however, did not just tell us that she has unfortunately become one of the one in eight. She also used her announcement to call for universal health care, arguing, “The good news is that I have the most glorious group of supportive and caring family and friends, and fantastic insurance through my union. The bad news is that not all women are so lucky, so let’s fight all cancers and make universal health care a reality.”

According to the American Cancer Society, more than 230,000 cases of invasive breast cancer were diagnosed in 2015, and more than 40,000 US women died that year from breast cancer.

One cause of death is that the cancer isn’t caught quickly enough — and insurance can play a big role there. The Susan G. Komen Foundation noted that in 2015, 31 percent of women ages 40 to 64 with no health insurance got a mammogram in the past two years, while 68 percent of women with health insurance — more than double the rate — got a mammogram in the past two years.

There are, of course, other causes of breast cancer death, from lower incomes to a lack of a regular health care provider to lack of sick leave at work.

But as Louis-Dreyfus notes, insurance appears to play a powerful role — and not all Americans have access to it.