I’m guessing by now most have seen the news report that one-third of ovarian cancer patients do not get the treatment/referrals that are offered to the rest of the patients. The study, which looked at over 10,000 patients, stated that women over 70, black, hispanic, or poor are not referred for more expensive treatments or even surgery that may extend their life.
I’ve got to say that I’m not surprised. My mother was in her fifties when the cancer recurred. We were lucky and she happened to be seen at the University of Tennessee when she had the crisis that led to the discovery of the cancers return. The physician there felt he could extend her life by at least two years if he did surgery immediately. She was ready and waiting for the surgery. Each morning prepared to go to surgery. Her insurance (my parents were retired military) felt surgery was not necessary. The physician who the insurance had review her files told the UT doctor that she was at her 5 year point for the return, and really she had a good run and had a good life. They would cover another round of chemotherapy.
The UT doctor wanted us to sue.
Mother on the other hand did not want to spend her final months involved in a lawsuit. She did not want us to either, and extracted a promise we would not pursue this legally. She wanted to try the chemo and spend her last months in joy rather than anger.
Its been a few years, and I do understand her wanting to move forward. Problem is I still hate those insurance people and the doctor who decided she had lived a good life when he never even talked to her or to us about it.
If you or your loved one is not given every opportunity at the best treatment, fight for it. If you don’t want to pursue the refusal legally, and you are at one with that, then choose that path. Don’t let your ability to pay for the treatment, or your insurance company decide. You deserve to have the best treatment.
Posted on May 9th, 2007 by Paula
Filed under: Ovarian Cancer