Obamacare Impact on Cancer Treatment

My brother-in law was told by his oncologist that they are unable to treat his lung cancer aggressively because of Obamacare. The doctor told my bro-in law that they had to start him out on "weak" chemo and prove that it didn't work before they could move him up to stronger chemo. Has anyone else encountered this? It sounds fishy to me.

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Also, have never heard of a LOWER dose of chemo.

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Is your brother-in-law on medicare or medicaid? If not, the onc would have no idea what his private insurance covers or doesn't cover. Dr's have enough to do but knowing each and every private insurance company and each and every police is out of anyone's knowledge, only accessed thru the billing offices or pre-approvals for each and every case. So, unless medicare or medicaid, the onc has no idea of what he is talking about. Maybe ask him when he last talked with your insurance company.

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I don't think you were getting the correct idea about the post. I think everyone here tries to answer questions as to what is posted. If valuable information that would give YOU a better answer, it would save you and others from information and comments that could be based on either incorrect information or incomplete information. By all means, please post a question or so, but the more information you can give, the better and more informed answers you will get. Believe me, many of us have done the same thing! Please ask away, our knowledge together is what makes us strong.

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Perhaps the dr meant that the drug he wished to use was unavailable due to production problems. That happened to me and my Onc had to come up with substitutions as there was extreme shortages of certain drugs. It had nothing to do with Obamacare but the drug companies.

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Oh, believe me, there a few who seem to have very little room in their heart especially for someone asking for forgiveness for an incomplete or somewhat inaccurate post. Being removed from the actual appointments and having to get thing 2nd 3rd hand and wanting to offer support the best you can, makes you wonder if we will ever grow our finger tips back on! I too have made one or two (at least) incorrect or posts with old information and you would think stoning just came back into fashion. Most are not that unforgiving but there will always be those who have only some stones to throw since there have never been any sins. You have apologized for your problems, I feel sorry for those who cannot accept that and move on.

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Wow! I stopped reading somewhere at the beginning of page 2. The argument is not about obamacare helping people. Unarguably, it will. It already has. But the observation (not argument) is that private insurance rates are skyrocketing and that on-going treatment (as compared to preventative care) is already suffering restrictions. I have no idea what that oncologist meant by his "weaker treatment" comment. At best, it was a poor choice of words to his patient. But I will tell you my husband has an incurable form of cancer, is currently in remission and we now learn his insurance no longer wishes to cover his treatment "out of network" when they have for five years. We will fight this. He is seeing one of the country's research experts on this particular cancer. No one "in network" has the skill or experience necessary to keep my husband alive when he goes out of remission - and he will.

So, in the midst of angry words, entitlements or not, are real people on both sides of this fence - seeking to live and praying they can secure the treatment necessary to do so. Every single person involved in this debate - nationwide - has a family, people who love them and a support system that is not willing to give that person up to a bunch of rules - either "yea" or "nay."

I don't have an answer. But I do know that we are all either suffering from lung cancer here or loving someone who similarly suffers and we all fight for health and want to be here next year. The answer perplexes me - but let's be kind to our own. We all know what it is like to fear we are not going to be good enough or strong enough or fortunate enough or lucky enough or even wealthy enough to get the right treatment or care.

It's not about who spoke or misspoke and most certainly not about our politics. It is about support and encouragement and knowledge and hope for each other.

I will tell you this. My daughter-in-law, an interventional radiologist, is doing a fellowship in breasts. She lives in England temporarily with our son, her husband. But although she is licensed to practice in England, she is doing a fellowship in the US as the protocols for breast cancer in England are not aggressive enough for US health care. For instance, in the US we treat an "in situ" cancer of the breast. In England, commonly they don't. Is this right or wrong? I don't know but I do know we have high expectations in the US of obtaining the right and accurate treatment to be as well as we possibly can be. Do we sacrifice that option if we have "state run" health care? I don't know. No one does.

So let's stop the argument and start supporting each other. I will fight for my husband. I will fight for myself. I will fight for my children and I will support - in any way I can - the rights of others to be well. But will I fight my fellow lung cancer patient? I don't think so. I want to live. I do not cede that right to another. But isn't that exactly what we all think? Public health statistics do not single out the individual and we are all individuals here.

pax vobiscum.

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After having skimmed this whole dealie, I have to say I like Slimesnake's post and elzorro's clarification.

Forgive me if this has already been said, but the only thing to be done in a case like this is to go direct to the doctor and ask him to cite the specific section of "Obamacare" that is supposedly constraining him.

Without that in hand, everything, and I mean EVERYTHING else, is speculation, no matter how entertaining or well written it may be.

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Agree Rocker!


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Hi, Bobcat51. That restriction was put on hospitals because they were kicking people out of the hospital too early -- and actually dumping homeless patients out of cabs in the ghettos. If a hospital kicks somebody out on the street before they are ready to go and well enough, and they have to return to the hospital within 30 days for the same condition the hospital must take them back and is restricted in what they can charge. That law was for the protection of the patient and to make sure that the hospital doesn't just sweep them under the rug -- or just out the door.

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Gracehope, your daughter-in-law sounds like a wonderful person. Your description of her fellowship brought a much needed smile. My mom had breast cancer that was luckily found very very early actually mistake. Best wishes to you

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So glad for your 24 months rather than 8. It gives us all hope ! PS My onc does not want to give me a figure at all and I don't press it.

In fact, I am stage 4 and other than my lung and a part of my shoulder, I don't even know where mycancer has spread to. I only know about my shoulder because that is what began to hurt and after an MRI and a scan, they discovered the lung as the primary.

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