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LETTER TO NANCY-ANN MIN DEPARLE
August 3, 2000
Nancy-Ann Min DeParle
Dear Ms. DeParle:
It is with the greatest satisfaction that we congratulate you and your staff on a thoughtful and timely implementation of the President's directive on coverage of clinical trials. The National Coverage Decision recently posted on your agency's website adopts all the values that we, as patient advocates, have urged for years and then goes further still. Medicare beneficiaries diagnosed with cancer will now be assured that they will have access to all reasonable options for therapy, including treatment in a quality clinical trial.
Your decision on this important issue will make a difference not just for individual beneficiaries with cancer, but also for general progress against the disease. For too long the resistance of third-party payers to support for clinical research has hindered medical advances, nowhere more so than in cancer. Now, with your agency's recent decision implementing the President's Executive Memorandum, Medicare will stand as an example for all other insurers. Hopefully, in the future, all cancer patients will have access to treatment in clinical trials regardless of their insurance or socioeconomic status.
Your personal involvement and support will long be remembered by our community of cancer survivors, providers and researchers. Thank you so much.
Cancer Leadership Council
for Lung Cancer Advocacy, Support, and Education
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