Letter to the Editor: A need for health care equality

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services released its draft decision on coverage for monoclonal antibodies targeting amyloid for the treatment of Alzheimer’s disease. What could have been a milestone moment, building on the hope that swelled when the first of these treatments was FDA approved, has resulted in the opposite. A moment of outrage, disappointment and discrimination.

This draft proposes a coverage decision that is so restrictive, it can hardly be considered coverage at all. It effectively denies access to all current and future FDA-approved treatments targeting amyloid in those living with Alzheimer’s disease — regardless of clinical trial results and what the FDA recommends.

As the leader of the Alzheimer’s Association Delaware Valley Chapter, and someone who has personally witnessed the devastating impact of Alzheimer’s, I am incensed by this draft.

In a city, and country, where the gap in access to health care is so wide, I am concerned that this decision will only deepen the divide — resulting in access and advantages for only a privileged few.

As Philadelphians, united in the fight for equitable healthcare access, I call on you to urge CMS to change this decision, to ensure fair access for all who could benefit from FDA-approved treatments.

Kristina Fransel, Executive Director of Alzheimer’s Association Delaware Valley Chapter