To the editor:
I know how tough the fight against cancer can be. I was a caregiver. New chemotherapy drugs can fight cancer better with fewer side effects.
About one in four new treatments can be taken at home, improving a patient's quality of life. But a significant number of patients are being forced to delay or forgo treatments because newer treatments aren't covered under their pharmacy benefit and do not have the same rate as older, more traditional IV therapies.
Please don't force cancer patients to fight cancer with outdated weapons, or force their families into bankruptcy from medical bills. I respectfully ask the Ohio Senate to support the Oral Chemotherapy Modernization bill (S.B. 194) to make sure cancer patients have the same access to new drugs as they did to older ones. Fifteen other states have similar laws in place, with negligible effects on insurance premiums.
Cancer patients shouldn't have to face a $10,000 bill to take home their best chance of extending their life or beating their disease. Please help local cancer patients - and the families, friends and co-workers who depend on them.
Barbara J. Wilinski
Cancer Society Cancer