The real problems facing local cancer centers


ABILENE, Texas - U.S. Representative Randy Neugebauer, (R) District 19, was in Abilene Wednesday to learn more about problems facing private cancer care centers.

"That's all we ask is treat everybody the same," said Jeff Messer, practice director at Texas Oncology Center.

Messer said right now hospitals have an unfair advantage over private health care facilities.

"They get paid more for a lot of the same treatments we give in an office or private care setting," said Messer.

The center's staff is hoping by meeting with U.S. Representative Randy Neugebauer they can cut some of that red tape.

"It's not an equal playing field right now," said Messer.

Wednesday Neugebauer toured the Texas Oncology Center to find out how legislation affects the care they provide.

"It's always important to hear, ‘what are some of the ways that the federal government is getting in the way?' And one of the things that I went to Washington to do was to get the federal government out-of-the-way," said Neugebauer.

Neugebauer said that way he knows what kind of problems need to be addressed in the health care legislation being drafted.

"Republicans in the next few weeks will roll out their alternative. If we didn't do Obamacare, what would we do? I think we have a better solution and I think our solution will begin to address some of these things," Neugebauer said.

Recently several news organizations reported that private cancer care facilities like Texas Oncology were not included in any Affordable Care Act plans.

Messer said that was because they were still deciding which plans to partner with at the time. Now they are available to customers of 27 different Affordable Care Act plans.