John Stossel Opens up About Recovering After Lung Cancer Surgery: 'I'm Able to Return to Life'

Posted on by Celeb

By Aaron Couch

05/13/2016 AT 09:00 PM EDT

Fox Business Network’s John Stossel is back at work after undergoing treatment for lung cancer.

The Stossel host revealed his diagnosis last month in a column in which he praised the medical care he was getting, but also complained “hospitals are lousy at customer service.”

On Friday’s Stossel, the journalist, 69, is addressing his treatment – which saw 20 percent of a lung removed.

Now recovering, Stossel tells PEOPLE he is already back to playing beach volleyball in Central Park (though he admits he huffs and puffs a bit because of the surgery).

“I keep saying, ‘wait a second’ and pissing off my opponents,” Stossel jokes. “But I’m able to return to life.”

He received his diagnosis after his wife, Ellen, urged him to get a test after suffering from a cough. A CAT scan revealed a growth on his lung (unrelated to the cough, which has since gone away).

“It’s an 80 percent chance it will be fine. I have to go back for scans,” says Stossel. “It’s a little scary, but it’s far worse to have a diagnosis that involves long-term chemo and radiation, which I didn’t have any of.”

After his diagnosis, Stossel, took comfort in his family and knowing his daughter, Lauren, was a doctor and would keep an eye out for him as he underwent treatment.

“Things like that make it easier. She would notice if something was awry,” says Stossel, who is also father to a son, Max.

During his treatments, Stossel was disturbed by what he saw as a lack of customer service and efficiency in his hospital experience. He advocates for a free market approach for improving medicine in America, citing LASIK eye surgery and plastic surgery as areas of medicine in which the consumer, rather than insurance companies, pay more, leading to greater competition among medical providers.

“It seemed so needlessly stupid, that everywhere around us, things [outside of medicine] keep improving. It’s easier. We use text, emails, Facebook. The hospitals don’t use any of it,” says Stossel. “And you’re filling out these forms by hand. Four pages. … You go to the next doctor’s office, another three page form … with a little innovation, which you have all over the free market, it could be easier.”

Now back at work at Fox Business Network, he says he’s grateful for all the well wishes, but doesn’t quite feel like he deserves any special attention.

“People have been very nice, saying they have been praying for me. I feel a little embarrassed, because I don’t feel I had a life-threatening diagnosis. I caught something early, they took it out.”

Stossel airs Fridays (9 p.m. ET) on Fox Business.

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