Health Matters: A Custom-Made Drug Adds Months to Patients' Lives

By: Triston Sanders-Medical Anchor Email
By: Triston Sanders-Medical Anchor Email

May 18, 2011
How much is your life worth?
Would you spend a hundred thousand dollars to live a few more months?
Provenge is a new way of attacking prostate cancer that uses the patient's DNA profile.
It's a custom-made drug and it costs 93-thousand dollars for each treatment.
It can give you four more months to live.
It's not a drug that's mass produced; it's made for each patient.
You might think with its price tag, the government might pass.
But not only did medicare approve its use, they never even looked at its cost, because they're not allowed to.
Critics say the patients will likely never see the bill, but the rest of us will eventually.
But some doctors believe that breakthroughs like Provenge open the door to a medical promise that will pay off, down the road.

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