Psoriasis patients urge support for a safe, cost-saving solution
As someone affected by psoriasis living in Illinois, I urge you to work with State Senator Maggie Crotty and State Representative Lou Lang, and other members of the General Assembly in the next session to pass legislation to reduce copayments for phototherapy treatment of psoriasis. Psoriasis, the most prevalent autoimmune disease in the country, is a non-contagious, chronic, inflammatory, painful, often disfiguring and disabling disease for which there is no cure. It requires steadfast treatment and lifelong attention.
Phototherapy is a relatively inexpensive form of psoriasis treatment and the substantial copayments often associated with phototherapy are a barrier to accessing care for patients who need this safe, effective and economical option to treat their disease and live a normal life. Copayments for phototherapy continue to rise while the burden of that cost has shifted to us, the patients.
As a result, many psoriasis patients are faced with hefty payments of $50 or more per treatment. With patients usually following a regimen of three treatments a week, out-of-pocket cost can amount to $600 dollars a month. I am concerned that these high copayments are keeping patients from using phototherapy, and as a result, they either opt out of treatment entirely or prematurely move to other therapies that may bring greater risk and/or expense.
It is our sincere hope that you will work toward a solution that will ensure patients the access to this safe, effective, first-line treatment. Thank you.