Sunday, April 04, 2010

Adenoid Cystic Carcinoma in the news

A few stories out of recent news items on ACC:

Tim Pearson of Glen Innes, New Zealand is in the news again: http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/health/3533253/A-10-year-cancer-battle.
I wrote about Mr. Pearson back in 2008: http://cheekylibrarian.blogspot.com/2008/08/adenoid-cystic-carcinoma-in-news.html. Back then, he was just hoping to get his cable hooked up. I guess he is still having a hard time making ends meet. I would think that New Zealand would take care of their terminally ill citizens a bit better than either story leads one to understand. If anyone out there can explain the New Zealand 'sickness benefit', send me an email. For folks here in the US facing terminal illness, I would suppose that there is disability through Social Security (prepare for a long application process), and one can go into hospice. Hospice is better to go into earlier than later - it is supposed to cover medical bills involved with palliative care, and there isn't a time limit on it, as far as I know.
Here's a cheer to you, Mr. Pearson - wishing you only the best. You are leading the way down the path that many of us will follow after you.

Gregory Jon Lynn of Houston has ACC, and has been treated by the VA: http://www.examiner.com/x-12971-Houston-Legal-Issues-Examiner~y2010m3d20-VA-wont-pay-for-cancerstricken-vets-treatment-yet-illegals-can-get-free-medical-care. The VA has run out of treatment options (not unusual on our type of cancer), and the story says that he was referred to MD Anderson. The problem comes up that the VA refuses to cover costs involved in a clinical trial that MD Anderson is running, and the VA office has in fact said that they have "no intention of referring Mr. Lynn to the MD Anderson trial". Our cancer is a tricky thing, as are clinical trials - a person would have to meet rigorous standards to be accepted into a trial, no matter who was paying for the treatment. I don't know the facts behind the Examiner's story about illegal aliens receiving free medical care and how that applies to this ACC warrior's individual case. I would wager that ANY alien, illegal or not, would still have to meet the strict standards of any clinical trial to receive the treatment protocol. My heartfelt wishes go out to Mr. Lynn's family as they face the brutal facts that ACC brings to all of our lives. As a veteran's wife and former Army wife and civilian, I support our VA system and all it tries to do to care for those that sacrificed so much of their lives for our freedoms. Sometimes cancer wins in the end - that sucks.

Gabriele Anderson, track star of the University of Minnesota Gophers, is in the news for being awarded the Richard "Pinky" McNamara Student-Athlete Achievement Award. http://www.gophersports.com/ViewArticle.dbml?DB_OEM_ID=8400&ATCLID=204919824. You read about Ms. Anderson on this blog about a year ago: http://cheekylibrarian.blogspot.com/2009/05/adenoid-cystic-carcinoma-in-news.html. The award she received is given to a student athlete who has inspired all... Congratulations, Ms. Anderson, on being recognized for your strength in the face of ACC.

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