Right to Try

January 1, 2020

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Anchor lead: Can legislation compel insurers to cover some cancer treatments? Elizabeth Tracey reports

People with advanced cancers should be able to try medications and treatments without having to attempt older and less expensive regimens first. That’s the substance of a bill making its way through the Ohio legislature, and it’s one of several similar ones nationally. William Nelson, director of the Kimmel Cancer Center at Johns Hopkins, says insurers may already be expanding options in a very thoughtful way.

Nelson: What I’m not sure of is where this whole dynamo is going to end up. It seems as if the insurers are moving towards a more pay for value kind of paradigm, in which the best treatment given to the right person is the more effective play, even if it’s expensive if it’s appropriately given to this group of people because of a precision medicine test, not given to someone else where it won’t be effective then its use is better. I am very much in support of this value based care evolution.  :33

At Johns Hopkins, I’m Elizabeth Tracey.

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