Politics & Elections
3:00 pm
Wed February 8, 2012

Senator Nordquist introduces a bill to make chemotherapy affordable

LB 882 would take cancer treatment decisions away from insurance companies and put them back into the hands of patients and their doctors.

That’s according to Omaha Senator Jeremy Nordquist, who introduced LB 882.  He says the measure creates parity between oral chemotherapy medications and IV medications for cancer patients.  Senator Nordquist says under the current system, IV medications are considered a medical benefit. 

Oral chemotherapy medications, however, are considered a pharmaceutical benefit.  Because pharmaceutical benefits cost more, patients may have to forgo the medication their doctor feels is most appropriate because the patient cannot afford the treatment.

"When somebody is diagnosed with cancer, it’s good if someone can sit down with their physician and try to make the best decision and figure out what the best course of treatment is for them to beat cancer, rather than having their insurance company tell them that they can’t receive the most appropriate course of treatment.”

Nordquist’s legislation is awaiting a hearing in a Unicameral Committee. More information is available at nebraskalegislature.gov.