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PLAN TO RAISE DRUG CO-PAY IS BASED ON GREED

I'm writing in response to the Sept. 23 "In the Debate" written by Dr. Michael Cropp, medical director for Independent Health. In the commentary, he defended the HMO's decision to deny coverage of experimental and investigative procedures. While this decision is debatable, another recent decision is not.

I am referring to the ruling that as of Jan. 1, 1998, there will be a co-pay of up to 50 percent for self-injected medications. In my case, this includes a medically required growth hormone for my daughter. There is no way that we can afford up to $1,000 each month for several years for this medication. Isn't it for these unforeseen circumstances that we have insurance?

There is no reason other than cost to treat self-injectable drugs differently than other medications. The decision is based on greed and a desire on the part of the HMOs to avoid costly, but necessary, medical care.

This decision is causing great anguish and anger, as many see their loved ones either denied medication or find their lives ruined financially.

Kathleen C. Lelonek Tonawanda

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