Jimmy Carter’s cancer treatment inspires new Georgia law

Jimmy Carter
In this Nov. 1, 2015 photo, former President Jimmy Carter is interviewed at a Habitat for Humanity project site in Memphis, Tenn. Carter said it’s too soon to tell whether treatment he received for his brain cancer has been effective, but that he hasn’t been uncomfortable or ill while receiving rounds of immune-boosting drugs. (AP Photo/Mark Humphrey)

ATLANTA (AP) – Georgia’s governor has signed a bill inspired by former President Jimmy Carter’s cancer treatment.

The measure signed Tuesday by Republican Gov. Nathan Deal prevents insurance companies from limiting coverage of drugs for stage four cancer patients. Supporters of the bill say patients sometimes cannot get certain drugs unless they first try other treatment options.

Carter, now 91, announced in August that he had been diagnosed with skin cancer that had spread to his brain and would begin receiving doses of Keytruda. The newly approved drug helps the immune system seek out cancer cells appearing in a patient’s body.

Carter said in March that he had stopped treatment after several scans found no cancer in his body.

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