Coard Simpler: Between my Cancer and Remission, a Costly Drug

Coard Simpler: Between my Cancer and Remission, a Costly Drug
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    My name is Coard, I'm from Baltimore and I've spent
    the last 18 years dealing with prescription drugs
    and high costs.
    I was diagnosed with chronic myelogenous
    leukemia known more commonly as CML.
    It's a disease that effects 5,000 people in the U.S.
    a year, I mean a very small number.
    And the standard of care at the time it was a
    self-injected chemotherapy and after 6 months I had
    lost 35 pounds on this.
    I lost all my hair and it didn't work.
    I had to go through 6 months of the injectable
    chemotherapy which made me eligible for a new drug
    which saved my life.
    My progression and improvement was dramatic.
    I mean, I was in remission probably in just over a
    year from the time I started taking the drug.
    The drug would be so expensive that I would get
    tied up in either pre-approvals or the
    prescription had expired.
    So there would be times when they wouldn't
    approve my refill and I would have to pay
    for it out of pocket.
    So I just ended up charging a lot
    of it on a credit card.
    I was fortunate enough to have resources to be able
    to cover it but it took money out of savings.
    That adds a layer of stress to anybody's recovery
    whether it's leukemia or whatever it is
    that I don't think most people should have to deal with.
    I'm grateful that the President and Secretary
    Azar are putting America's patients first.
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