Closer look at chemo bill - WAOW - Newsline 9, Wausau News, Weather, Sports

Closer look at chemo bill

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MARSHFIELD (WAOW) - Doctor Richard Mercier of the Marshfield Clinic says cancer drugs are too expensive.

"In many ways really a challenge to the health care system to provide the drugs at the price that is now being charged," says Mercier.

Governor Scott Walker's spokeswoman says he would sign a bill making chemotherapy pills more affordable. The bill would require patients to pay a $100 monthly co-pay for the drugs.

Right now oral chemotherapy is more expensive than intravenous chemotherapy. Some insurance companies say they prefer the cheapest treatments. Doctors say hospitals and clinics will not be impacted by the change being proposed.

"The primary impact is on the patients themselves because many patients do not have similar coverage to prescription medications as they would for intravenous medications," Mercier said.

But the measure does have its critics. Two state senators voted against the bill

"Health care is expensive and trying to determine the best way to support the cost of health care is a challenge," says Mercier.
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