Utah bill requires insurers to cover chemo drug

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SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — Some lawmakers are trying to cut the cost of expensive cancer treatment pills for Utah patients.

The Salt Lake Tribune reports that (http://bit.ly/XJ2QF4) lawmakers are taking up a bill Tuesday that would require insurance companies pick up a greater share of the tab for oral chemotherapy drugs.

Nationally, cancer-fighting pills are on the rise. They are replacing chemo delivered through the patient's vein.

That means less debilitating side effects and fewer trips to the clinic. But the drugs also carry co-payments that can total up to a few thousand dollars.

Right now, insurers reimburse patients for IV chemotherapy, but not for the drugs, which have become much more available in the past few years.

A Senate committee will vote on the bill this week.

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Information from: The Salt Lake Tribune, http://www.sltrib.com

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