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With new cancer fighting drugs emerging rapidly on the market, employers are faced with a new dilemma: How can they best support employees who have cancer while still managing the costs of their health plan? The new drugs offer better treatment outcomes, but the drugs themselves can be extremely costly, putting pressure on attempts to better manage plan expenses.

The Northeast Business Group on Health (NEBGH) devoted considerable resources in 2015 to study how employers with self-insured plans approach cancer treatment. Following workshops, interviews with plan managers, and a survey of about 20 self-insured employers, NEBGH said that employers clearly want individuals with cancer to have high quality treatment, but they have yet to develop a clear strategy for managing the cost of that treatment.

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Dan Cook

Dan Cook is a journalist and communications consultant based in Portland, OR. During his journalism career he has been a reporter and editor for a variety of media companies, including American Lawyer Media, BusinessWeek, Newhouse Newspapers, Knight-Ridder, Time Inc., and Reuters. He specializes in health care and insurance related coverage for BenefitsPRO.

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