Kathy Bates Wake Up, Politicians! 10 Million Patients Need Help

4/19/2016 3:36 PM PDT

Kathy Bates Sends Wake Up Message to Politicians About Lymphedema

EXCLUSIVE

Kathy Bates is throwing her support behind a group of women on a mission that could affect millions of people like Kathy ... who are suffering with lymphedema.

We got Kathy at LAX on Tuesday, and she opened up about her painful battle. Lymphedema is a swelling of tissues caused by removal of/or damage to lymph nodes. Kathy developed it after undergoing a double mastectomy in 2012.

Kathy told us patients are dealing with two huge issues -- one being the lack of health insurance coverage, but as she explained it ... the cavalry is on its way to Washington, D.C.

As for issue #2 -- Kathy's doing her part. Check it out.