Medicare Expands Coverage For Cancer Drugs

By: Associated Press Email
By: Associated Press Email

Stay up-to-date with KAKE News:

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

There's word today of a broad change in Medicare drug coverage that spells relief for cancer patients but could mean a major new expense for the government.

Medicare is expanding its coverage to allow reimbursement for some so-called "off-label" use of cancer drugs. That is, drugs prescribed in a way not specifically approved by the Food and Drug Administration.

Medicare announced the change in a news release June 5, but it went largely unnoticed until picked up by The New York Times today.

A spokesman for the American Society of Clinical Oncology says the eased reimbursement policy will reduce "the hassle factor."

But because cancer drugs often can cost thousands of dollars a month, the decision is sparking controversy. Consumers Union thinks Medicare should take a second look at the policy. A spokesman says in some cases, there's very small gain but at great cost


Comments are posted from viewers like you and do not always reflect the views of this station.
powered by Disqus
KAKE TV 1500 N. West Street Wichita, KS 67203-1323 (316) 943-4221
Copyright © 2002-2014 - Designed by Gray Digital Media - Powered by Clickability 38487089 - kake.com/a?a=38487089
Gray Television, Inc.