Nacogdoches doctor predicts long road to cancer cure

Nacogdoches doctor predicts long road to cancer cure

NACOGDOCHES COUNTY, TX (KTRE) - Despite a call to action to cure cancer by President Barack Obama in his last state of the union, some doctors are skeptical of a quick cure.

Dr. Dyanesh Ravindran has been practicing in Nacogdoches for 17 years. Ravindran said cancer treatment has come a long way in that time.

"We are getting closer to it day by day," Ravindran said.

In his address to the country Tuesday night Obama urged a nation-wide effort to find a cure for cancer.

"Tonight, I'm announcing a new national effort to get it done," Obama said. "For the loved ones we've all lost, for the family we can still save, let's make America the country that cures cancer once and for all."

Ravindran said there are already cancers that a cure has been discovered but the treatment can be costly.

"For some of these the cost can be between $5,000 and $6,000 a month," Ravindran said. "Even with insurance it is a tough thing to do. You have to take the pill for the rest of your life."

Ravindran said for the plan to work he would believe there has to be a change in insurance.

"Even with the current treatment there are high co-pays and deductibles," Ravindran said. "I would think there needs to be a divide and have a new special insurance for cancer treatment."

In his announcement, Obama put Vice President Joe Biden in charge of the effort. On Wednesday morning's Good Morning America, Biden said he is not sure on the specific details, but he plans on starting the initiative with increased public and private resources followed by breaking 'down silos and bring all the cancer fighters together."

Ravindran is unsure a federally supported plan would work.

"Money with a federal program; I don't think so," Ravindran said. "It's hard. I don't think they can come up with the funding."'

Ravindran said despite his skepticism on the short term success of the program he does believe in another 20 years, the fight on cancer will be further along the road to a cure.

"The testing and development will take several years, but in two decades I can say there will be more advanced treatments available, Ravindran said.

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