When oncologist Yousuf Zafar at the Duke Cancer Institute prescribed an expensive pill for a young man with colon cancer two years ago, he assumed his patient could afford it because he had a job and private insurance.
Five patient advocacy groups for diseases including cancer and AIDS urged the U.S. to force Obamacare insurers to lower co-payments on costly drugs, saying some plans discriminate against people with serious illness.
The U.S. could save almost $3 billion a year if Medicare patients were given Avastin instead of Lucentis to treat two diseases that could lead to blindness, according to a study in the journal Health Affairs.
A novel colon cancer test from Exact Sciences Corp. and the Mayo Clinic using the DNA of specimens that patients collect at home detects more tumors than methods focusing on blood in the stool, a study found.
Genetic testing is becoming cheaper and more widespread, promising to usher in a revolution in cancer treatment. Yet, long-standing DNA tests are often overlooked for reasons including doctors’ ignorance and financial incentives discouraging companies from marketing them.