ObamaCare to Increase Cost of Cancer Treatments

Katie Pavlich
Posted: May 13, 2013 8:33 AM

Remember when Democrats accused Republicans of hating sick people because they didn't want to pass ObamaCare? Remember when Democrats accused Rep. Paul Ryan of wanting to "throw granny off a cliff" because he dared to try and reform the Medicaid system in order to reduce costs and increase quality of care?

Despite making promises to decrease the cost of healthcare, afterall, the official name for ObamaCare is the "Affordable Care Act," cancer patients are about to see their treatment costs skyrocket.

Cancer patients could face high costs for medications under President Barack Obama's health care law, industry analysts and advocates warn.

Where you live could make a huge difference in what you'll pay.

To try to keep premiums low, some states are allowing insurers to charge patients a hefty share of the cost for expensive medications used to treat cancer, multiple sclerosis, rheumatoid arthritis and other life-altering chronic diseases.

Such "specialty drugs" can cost thousands of dollars a month, and in California, patients would pay up to 30 percent of the cost. For one widely used cancer drug, Gleevec, the patient could pay more than $2,000 for a month's supply, says the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society.

And if you think paying for treatment is the biggest issue, think again. Finding a doctor is going to be the toughest part.

Most physicians have a pessimistic outlook on the future of medicine, citing eroding autonomy and falling income, a survey of more than 600 doctors found.

Six in 10 physicians (62 percent) said it is likely many of their colleagues will retire earlier than planned in the next 1 to 3 years, a survey from Deloitte Center for Health Solutions found. That perception is uniform across age, gender, and specialty, it said.

UPDATE: Just last week President Obama held a "Mother's Day" event at the White House touting cancer screenings and women's health covered by ObamaCare. He failed to mention how much it wold cost.

"Because of this law there are millions of other Americans - moms and dads and daughters and sons - who no longer have to hang their fortunes on chance. Because we are not going to inflict that hardship on the American people again," Obama said. "The United States of America does not sentence its people to suffering just because they don't make enough to buy insurance on the private market, just because their work doesn't provide health insurance, just because they fall sick or suffer an accident."

The House will vote again this week to repeal the bill.