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August 23, 1985

Paying for Cancer Care Under the Diagnosis-Related Group Reimbursement

Author Affiliations

Mercy Health Center Oklahoma City

JAMA. 1985;254(8):1032. doi:10.1001/jama.1985.03360080042008

To the Editor.—  Drs Yarbro and Mortenson in their COMMENTARY in the Feb 1 issue of JAMA1 have correctly identified a critical issue in the care of cancer patients. Unfortunately, they did not stress that many of those patients who are in formal clinical trials are there precisely because the conventional treatment has either already failed or shows little promise of being successful. If those patients cannot be treated either as members of the study population in a clinical trial or with that same treatment in some other context, they may very well receive no effective treatment at all.Dr Davis'2 reply begs the issue. If she will merely take a look, for example, at the diagnosis-related groups' (DRGs) reimbursement for the treatment of acute leukemia, she must immediately recognize that no patient can receive any modern course of treatment with the aim of producing a complete remission without