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Fight the Cancer Care Cut!

Guest LizC

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Hi everyone! I got a handout this week at my oncologist’s office about new Medicare Drug Benefit Legislation and the CANCER CARE CUT included in the bill that would result from it. Maybe you are thinking, “but I am not on Medicare – it won’t effect me”, but you are wrong. The standards that our insurance companies follow are based on Medicare standards – basically if Medicare starts doing it, our insurance companies will soon follow. Below I have written a letter (which explains the issue) that I e-mailed to several Congress members asking them to “Drop the Cancer Care Cut”.

“Dear Lawmaker,

As a cancer patient, I want to let you know of my strong opposition to the cancer care cut now being considered as part of the Medicare reform bill.

Under the bill you are now debating, Mandatory Vendor Imposition (MVI) system would be activated. This system will endanger patients access to timely cancer treatment, allow outsiders to interfere in the patient-provider relationship and expose patients to counterfeit drugs and medical mistakes. Under this bill, cancer care would be cut $16 billion by cutting the reimbursement for chemotherapy drugs without increasing the funding for nursing and other support services. If this cut is allowed to stand, access and the quality of care for cancer patients will be cut back drastically. Clinics will close and nurses will be laid off.

Medical research is getting closer to cures every day. But those cures won’t do us any good if we don’t have access to them. Please stop this cancer care cut.

Thank you for your help.”

Don’t forget to write your name! Can you imagine having a 3rd party provide your chemo drugs instead of your doctor? If this happens patient’s treatments will be delayed (as in, “your drugs didn’t come in today, come back tomorrow”) and we will potentially be exposed to counterfeit drugs or mistakes made by these 3rd parties. I don’t know about you, but the only person I want mixing my chemo drugs is the technician in my oncologist’s office!

I went to www.congress.org to get the contact information for these congressmen. I made note of the e-mail addresses that were on the website. If you want to join in this effort simply copy and paste the below addresses into the TO: line of a new e-mail and feel free to copy my letter – or just write your own!

Here are the e-mail addresses:

Senator@mconnell.senate.gov, dhastert@mail.house.gov, blunt@mail.house.gov, sf.nancy@mail.house.gov, christopher.cox@mail.house.gov, menendez@mail.house.gov, porter.goss@mail.house.gov, john.linder@mail.house.gov, pryce.oh15@mail.house.gov,

myrick@mail.house.gov, petes@mail.house.gov, alcee.pubhastings@mail.house.gov, bdoney@mail.house.gov

There were several other congressmen who should be contacted on this issue, but whose e-mail addresses were not given (just a “click here to e-mail” link was given). On congress.org, go to “elected officials – U.S. Congress” and you can look them up by name and send them and e-mail from there. Just choose “compose your own letter” and copy and paste the letter in – it is easy! Here are their names: Ted Stevens, Bill Frist, Tom Daschle, Harry Reid, Rick Santorum, Kay Bailey Hutchinson, Jon Kyl, Geroge Allen, Jon Corzine, Charles Grassley, Tom DeLay, Eric Cantor, Steny Hoyer, Richard Gephardt, Robert Matsui, John Shimkus, Dave Camp, David Dreier, Lincoln Diaz-Balart, Doc Hastings, Thomas M. Reynolds, Martin Frost, Louise Slaughter, James McGovern

I encourage you to do what you can and don’t let this bill make things harder for us!


Liz Compton

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