About Cancer Treatment Centers of America
Because Cancer Treatment Centers of America understands that this can be a delicate time for you an your family, and that achieving wellness is your top priority, the company claims to use compassionate cancer care that addresses your physical, mental, and spiritual needs, which is implemented through integrative, “whole person” treatments that can reduce side effects, boost your energy, and keep you strong throughout the process. On top of this, Cancer Treatment Centers of America’s experts are claimed to use leading-edge technology and advanced treatment options that provide a thoroughly integrative approach to fighting cancer.
Cancer Treatment Centers of America was founded in 1988 as a private, for-profit enterprise, which today has grown to an established network of 5 hospitals throughout the country, with more than 4,900 employees. But do Cancer Treatment Centers of America’s personalized treatment plans necessarily mean that you’ll receive better care, and will you even be eligible for treatment in the first place? Find out below.
Cancer Treatment Centers of America Details
At its core, Cancer Treatment Centers of America claims to specialize in “integrated cancer care,” which means that they provide each patient with a dedicated team of doctors (oncologists, surgeons, etc.) and clinicians that can establish a proper diagnosis and personalized treatment plan based on your needs, including:
- Diagnostic imaging
- Radiation therapy
Using what’s known as “Patient Empowered Care,” Cancer Treatment Centers of America claims that you’ll meet with your cancer treatment team in one room and in sequential appointments, which they claim provides you with greater comfort, convenience, and privacy. In addition, because you’ll be able to ask as many questions as you like, the company claims that you’ll feel more in control.
In addition, Cancer Treatment Centers of America claims that they can handle everything for you from A to Z, including insurance benefits, lodging arrangements when traveling to one of their centers, scheduling your air travel, and even covering the cost of your plan ticket in some instances.
The Cancer Treatment Centers of America Insurance Process
Since you’re most likely familiar with traditional medical facilities, you might find the Cancer Treatment Centers of America admission process to be a little “shocking.” We’ll fully discuss why this is in the final section, although it’s primarily due to the fact that the company will first speak with you about how you plan to pay for your cancer treatments, and only after will they discuss any details about your treatment options.
With this said, what you’ll ultimately pay for your care at Cancer Treatment Centers of America is very specific to your individual circumstances, and depends almost wholly upon the type/severity of your cancer, your treatment plan, and your insurance (again, we’ll talk more about this in the final section), although some very detailed numbers such as average cost, patient experiences, and more can be found here.
In order to assess your treatment costs or to speak with Cancer Treatment Centers of America about their payment plans, you’ll need to speak with a representative at 800-615-3055.
Can Cancer Treatment Centers of America Help Put Your Cancer Into Remission?
When it comes down to it, does Cancer Treatment Centers of America’s integrative care and personalized approach have any effect on the efficacy of your treatment? If so, are they a viable alternative to larger medical institutions such as MD Anderson? Maybe, but keep the following in mind:
Before saying anything else, it’s important to note that Cancer Treatment Centers of America appears to have a primarily positive online customer reputation, with some of the most common compliments referencing effective treatments, quality staff, and even their high-quality food.
By far the biggest complaint we encountered during our research was about Cancer Treatment Centers of America’s refusal to treat patients, which is what we’ll talk about next.
The second most important thing to remember is that Cancer Treatment Centers of America is a private, for-profit enterprise, not a charity or public institution of any kind. Ultimately, this means that they are not obligated treat every (or any) patient who contacts them, so they do not treat underserved and/or uninsured individuals, regardless of their cancer concerns. On top of this, it appears that Cancer Treatment Centers of America does not accept Medicaid patients outside of their area.
With this said, your cancer treatment will likely cost a lot, so it’s important that you check with your insurance company and inquire about your coverage beforehand. If you don’t have any (or even enough) insurance, Cancer Treatment Centers of America can set up a payment plan (with approved credit).
Cancer Treatment Efficacy
Outside of their integrated approach and patient empowered care, Cancer Treatment Centers of America’s other “claim to fame” is that they have a higher success rate (e.g. remission) than the national average. However, according to this article, “rejecting certain patients and, even more, culling some of its patients from its survival data lets the company tout in ads and post on its website patient outcomes that look dramatically better than they would if the company treated all comers.”
In other words, the company’s claims about higher success rates may not necessarily be accurate when considering the fact that they can pick and choose which patients they’ll treat.
Pseudoscientific Cancer Care
Finally, Cancer Treatment Centers of America has been in some legal trouble in the past, as the company reached a settlement with the FTC in 2000 related to their “false and unsubstantiated claims in advertising and promoting their cancer treatments.”
However, even today, many of the company’s practices are still closely scrutinized, as this 2013 article discusses how CTCA integrates “pseudoscience with science,” specifically its use of “naturopathic oncology.”
Also, keep in mind that one of the members of your cancer treatment team will be a Naturopath, who will rely heavily on the use of “beneficial” supplements. However, it’s important to note that the vast majority of supplements have been shown to be mildly effective at best, and dangerous at worst. For a full rundown of this, be sure to read through our Nutritional Supplements Guide.
It appears that Cancer Treatment Centers of America has gained a reputation for providing effective cancer treatments using leading-edge technology and a unique integrated approach to patient care. However, keep in mind you may not be eligible for treatment based on your insurance plan, or may have to pay a great deal of out-of-pocket expenses.
6 out 6 people found this review helpful
Unethical with patients and employees
I would just like to offer some inside information on CTCA. Yes, they cherry pick patients and only offer a little care to poor people to keep the government off their backs. They are a private business and their financial bottom line is their top priority. After having worked there I can tell you their greed extends to employees too. Especially low level employees.
They will take money out of your paycheck for "benefits" you never agreed to. They purposely have very convoluted benefits sign up processes to try and sell you everything you don't want and need and even if you decline it all but medical insurance something will suddenly appear on your paycheck.
Patients and employees who dare to speak up or ask questions or who catch on to CTCA ways are kicked out or fired immediately. What patients of CTCA need to realize is that as a private company they can kick you out of their care at any time for any reason and they do - a lot. If a patient questions their integrity or ethics they get discharged from care. They even have a "bad" patient book with banned patient's pictures that they keep in various offices in the hospital. These people are not criminals, they are just people who spoke up and asked too many questions.
CTCA is not the place I would go or would want my family to go for treatment. They have nice buildings and they offer limo rides and fancy decorations but the facts are they offer no better treatment than any other top cancer hospital and I have heard they will offer unnecessary treatments or treatments that don't benefit the patients in any way just to increase their profits. They push products and services in every department. They want to get the most profit out of every department.
For example, the retail pharmacy. All those expensive supplements that are not going to help you cure or treat your cancer help increase the profit of the pharmacy. They push those like crazy. Every thing at CTCA is planned and carried out in a way as to maximize profits. The final word is not the doctor's. It is the business executives who decide and that is not the way medical care should work. All healthcare is a business but CTCA takes it to a whole other level. They should not be allowed to use the term "hospital" because that gives people a false sense of what they are. They treat people unethically and they know it and that is why they fear retribution from banned patients and past employees.
Instead of having a "bad" book of past patients and employees they need a "bad" book of CTCA executives and managers and doctors because the only ones who need to be feared are them and the only ones who should be afraid of CTCA are the patients and employees.
Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend