When Clinical Trials Are Compromised: A Perspective from a Patient Advocate
Twelve years ago, a friend from my breast cancer support group went to court because her insurance company had refused coverage for a bone marrow transplant. Her first transplant had failed and her cancer was progressing again. The insurance company refused coverage for the second transplant on the basis that it was an experimental treatment. The judge, a cancer survivor himself, was clearly moved by her appeal, and my friend got her transplant. Six months later, she was dead—not from her metastatic breast cancer, but from treatment-induced damage to her bone marrow.