By Anna Eliopoulos
A New York family discouraged, after getting a letter from their insurer, that their nine-month-old’s cancer treatment is denied.
Connor Richardson is the newborn of a retired NYPD officer, Wayne. He tells Fox News Radio, that up until two months ago, he was a smiling normal baby.
But then he was rushed to a Long Island hospital after exhibiting symptoms that Richardson says weren’t normal for his son… and that’s when they found out about the cancer
“He was in the operating room. They had to relieve the fluid,” Richardson says.” The tumor in his brain was preventing the fluid from circulating to his spine.”
A cat scan and MRI confirmed that an aggressive and rare form of cancer was affecting Connor.
“They made an attempt to remove the tumor the first time and they got approximately 85% of it, bleeding started by the pituitary gland, and they had to wait approximately a week to go back in, and the doctor believes he got it all.”
However, doctors at Saint Jude’s Childrens Hospital in Memphis, who had accepted him for chemo, said that they noticed that the cancerous cells had come back.
Connor continues to remain in their care, and to receive treatment.
Richardson says though that on October 11, he didn’t expect to get a letter from his insurance provider that coverage for his son’s treatment was denied.
“They’re not covering because one of the chemo treatments is clinical,” he says.
The experimental trial that their son was undergoing, with a mix of medications was considered by the letter “investigational” with no evidence of being effective.
“It’s like a form letter, and the bold faced part is the part they fill on their own, and it wasn’t medically necessary.”
Saint Jude’s provides free care to patients. So while no one is really footing the bill for treatment, Richardson says it’s the principal that bothers him.
“I believe Saint Jude’s should get paid for this. It’s going to come out to millions of dollars I’m sure.”
And Richardson adds that money is crucial to finding out how to treat and prevent cancer and other life-threatening diseases in children.
“It’s taking literally millions of dollars away from their research development.”
Richardson says he plans on contesting the denial.
“You have insurance but you don’t really. It’s really for disasters and this is a disaster and they’re not willing to cover it.”
According to Richardson, Connor is responding well to treatment.