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Thursday, March 20, 2014

 11:11 PM 

Dems pushing to reject GOP amendment on oral chemo bill

Minority Leader Peter Barca, D-Kenosha, has moved to reject the GOP amendment to the oral chemotherapy bill.

The amendment would say insurers must, at the very least, cap co-pays for oral chemotherapy at $100 per 30-day supply. That limit could increase at a rate tied to the Consumer Price Index starting in 2016. The original bill said insurers must treat oral chemotherapy drugs the same as IV chemotherapy drugs when it comes to out-of-pocket costs, and the amendment retains that option.

If the Assembly passed the amended version of the bill, it would be up to the Senate to concur and send the bill to the governor's desk.

Barca said Assembly GOP leadership was not trying to improve the bill but hoping the late change would hamper the bill's chances in the Senate.

"He wants to kill this bill," Barca said. "He doesn't like this bill. But the people like this bill. People who are desperately hanging on to hope that we'll do the right thing, that we're going to pass this bill and help people suffering with cancer."

Majority Leader Pat Strachota said she simply mirrored what the last seven states who passed similar legislation did and created a co-pay limit that was lower than California's $200 limit. She also said she chose a $100 cap because of the cancer patients who abandon their treatment when costs rise above that level.


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