Alternative Cancer Treatment Bill Similar to One Vetoed by Former Gov. Bill Haslam Approved by Senate

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Joel Ebert, Nashville TennesseanPublished 11:14 a.m. CT April 5, 2019

A bill similar to a measure vetoed last year by former Gov. Bill Haslam was approved by the Senate on Thursday. The legislation, SB 195, allows state employees to utilize proton therapy, an alternative cancer treatment. Proton therapy is a form of targeted radiation that is not covered by all insurers in Tennessee. It is used for cancers of the brain, lung, breast and neck. When Haslam issued his veto of a similar proton therapy bill last year, he said the proposal would have circumvented an established process for determining employee insurance coverage. “The state plan currently covers many forms of radiation treatment, and the provider advocating this bill rejected a medically appropriate plan for expanded coverage to instead pursue a political mandate," he said at the time.

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