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Bill pushes for equal treatment for chemotherapies
1/31/2010 3:00:00 PM
The American Cancer Society said that the medical bills of cancer patients who depend on oral chemotherapy for treatment accumulates much faster than cancer patients who receive intravenous chemotherapy as treatment.
The American Cancer Society’s Dana Dzwonkowski mentioned that under various health plans, expenses can reach as high as $9,000 each month for a treatment such oral chemotherapy. This treatment, in most instances, belongs to the pharmacy benefits of a patient, and it is not subjected to the stipulations of a plan on health insurance, she added.
Relative to this, Representatives John Kefalas and Randy Fischer have affixed their signatures on House Bill 1202, with the conviction that this can help the financial problems of patients undergoing oral chemotherapy. The American Cancer Society further said that patients who undergo such treatment comprise 15 to 20 percent of all patients with cancer.
The bill is set to require all medical insurance plans that cover intravenous chemotherapy medication to offer coverage for oral chemotherapy medication under a similar patient cost.
Kefalas said that the bill “creates greater equity, and it helps cancer patients because a lot of times insurance plans don’t cover oral chemotherapy.”
Moreover, Fischer stated that he signed the legislation because he is convinced that chemotherapy must be covered by insurance schemes, despite the kind of technology utilized.
Dzwonkowski said that, “There are a lot more situations now where oral chemo-therapy is the only kind of chemotherapy that can treat some kinds of cancer.” She added that oral cancer medicines are very expensive, and only two of these generic drugs are available in the market.
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