From 2017, Swiss health insurers will pay for hyperthermia in combination with radiation therapy
With effect from January 1, 2017, the Federal Office of Public Health added hyperthermia treatments in combination with radiation to the basic insurance benefits catalog. This means that patients can now bill the costs for this complementary medical form of cancer therapy through the health insurance companies.
In order for hyperthermia to be recognized as a compulsory service for selected indications and to cover the costs, the Swiss Hyperthermia Network must first assess the intended treatments. This network is a tumor conference with 15 clinics led by the Aarau Cantonal Hospital. This clinic has been using hyperthermia for selected superficial and deep-seated tumors for over 30 years. With this multimodal, clinical-oncological treatment together with the radio therapy, breast cancer, for example, can additionally be treated with surface hyperthermia or bladder cancer additionally with deep hyperthermia.
“It is an international signal if Switzerland now makes hyperthermia accessible to many patients because the health insurers are now paying the costs as a compulsory service. Because cancer affects many. Many patients are also looking for additional treatment options. And in oncology, heat therapy can be used in a co-medicative way, ”says Prof. Dr. András Szász, founder of oncothermia, the locally oriented form of hyperthermia. (pm)