Komen Ozark has very exciting news! Today, State Representative Greg Leding filed HB 1592 related to parity between the insurance coverage of oral chemotherapy and IV administered chemotherapy drugs.
Last year, Komen Ozark Executive Director – Lauren Marquette reached out to Rep. Greg Leding regarding this important issue and the need for legislation. She asked Rep. Leding to sponsor legislation that will impact not only Arkansas breast cancer patients but all cancer patients.
IV-administered chemotherapy is covered under a patients medical benefit, but oral drugs are often covered under the plan’s prescription benefit which may involve much higher out-of-pocket costs.
Patients should never be forced to choose a less appropriate treatment option simply because an insurer provides less coverage for a cancer drug that happens to be administered by mouth rather than intravenously. Patients and their physicians should be free to make treatment decisions based on what is best for that patient.
High cost oral treatments may be out of reach for many cancer patients. Financial barriers threaten the chances of survival since, in many cases; there are no equivalent treatments that can be substituted for the prescribed oral drug.
In addition, oral treatments can offer significant cost savings because an oral drug can be taken at home. IV drugs must be given to patients in a clinical setting where additional costs are involved in administering the drug.
Representatives Leding has a host of co-sponsor supporting HB 1592 – Representatives Murdock, Jett, D. Ferguson, G. Hodges, Lundstrum, McCollum, Richey, Whitaker and Vaught. Along with Senators Standridge, Elliott, S. Flowers, and Teague.
Komen Ozark’s media partner KNWA featured a “Doing Good” segment this week regarding the oral parity legislation. The link to the segment is below:
Komen Ozark will be posting more about this important legislation, upcoming hearings and its progress through the legislative process. If you would like to learn more about Oral Parity or how you can voice support for this bill, please contact the Komen Ozark Office at 479-750-7465.