NASA Engineer Finally Gets Approved for Proton Therapy Treatment

Derek Willingham – Source: Fox 26 Houston

You or someone you know has probably experienced challenges with a health insurance company such as billing issues, getting a procedure approved or appealing a denial. The latter was the case for NASA engineer Derek Willingham.

Insurance denied proton therapy twice, Derek’s mom persisted

Derek was not only denied proton therapy once, but twice. With the help of his mother and others, the 34-year-old was able to have Blue Cross Blue Shield re-open his case and approve him for proton therapy treatment at the MD Anderson Proton Therapy Center.

With proton therapy, Derek is able to treat his brain tumor more precisely sparing nearby healthy tissue. Plus, proton therapy has fewer side effects than traditional radiation. Steven J. Frank, M.D., medical director of the MD Anderson Proton Therapy Center, explained the amount of radiation patients receive during treatment. “The unnecessary radiation that can be illuminated with proton therapy appears to be a small amount. However, it is equivalent to 12,500 CT scans, or five million dental oral X-rays when prescribed to patients with head and neck cancer.”

Our staff is here to assist you

At the Proton Therapy Center, we have a dedicated and experienced Business Office staff ready to assist you with any health insurance issues or questions. Let us handle the paperwork so you can focus on your care.

Watch Derek’s story from Houston’s local Fox News Station.