ASCO in ActionASCO in Action regularly provides the latest news and analysis related to cancer policy news; see the following online articles. These updates provide snapshots of ASCO’s ongoing advocacy efforts, as well as opportunities for ASCO members and guests to take action on critical issues affecting the cancer community.

To sign up for advocacy alerts, log in to ASCO.org with your ASCO member or guest account, and visit the subscription center available under your account profile.

July 26, 2017

On November 6, 2017, ASCO and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) will jointly convene a Geriatric Oncology Workshop on improving the evidence base for treating the geriatric oncology population.

July 25, 2017

In a new op-ed, ASCO Chief Medical Officer Richard L. Schilsky, MD, FACP, FASCO, FSCT, argues that predictable funding increases for the National Institutes of Health are critical to make progress against cancer.

July 25, 2017

The House Energy and Commerce Committee’s Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigation recently held a hearing to examine the Health Resources and Services Administration’s (HRSA) oversight of the 340B Drug Pricing Program. Following the hearing, ASCO sent a letter to leadership of the subcommittee recommending changes to the program to better serve the oncology community.

July 25, 2017

The nonprofit Reagan-Udall Foundation for the Food and Drug Administration has released a new, online resource called the Expanded Access Navigator. The website, which focuses on oncology with plans to expand to other disease areas, features the first pharmaceutical company directory of expanded access policies and criteria, as well as educational resources, guides and downloadable forms. ASCO was one of several organizations to help develop the Navigator.

July 25, 2017

Last week, the Maine legislature passed LD 1170, a bill increasing the legal age to purchase tobacco products to age 21. This bill would make Maine only the third state behind Hawaii and California to pass Tobacco 21 legislation.  The vote in the Maine Senate was an overwhelming 31 to 4 in the House was 113 to 34. The bill will take effect in July 2018 and will now go to Governor LePage for signature.

July 25, 2017

In a statement submitted to a House Energy and Commerce health subcommittee hearing entitled, “Examining Bipartisan Legislation to Improve the Medicare Program,” ASCO expressed strong support for two pieces of legislation that aim to strengthen Medicare.

July 25, 2017

The United States Senate is expected to vote this week on health system reform legislation. The Senate today passed a motion on party lines to proceed, so it will have 20 hours to debate its legislative proposal. A vote on the bill will take place following the debate. 

July 24, 2017

ASCO's is kicking off a new Practice Engagement Program to help practices navigate and respond to the changes occuring in the cancer care delivery system.

July 24, 2017

A new article in the Journal of Clinical Oncology (JCO) summarizes the discussions of ASCO’s “Omics and Precision Oncology Workshop,” led by the CancerLinQ Oncology Informatics Task Force (formerly the ASCO Health Information Technology Workgroup), along with the key challenges and recommendations identified by the participants. ASCO held the workshop last October, to begin to address four issues identified at the Data Standards and Interoperability Summit held earlier in the year: omics and precision oncology, advancing interoperability, patient engagement, and value-based oncology.

July 24, 2017

Leading national cancer organizations have released a joint position statement to guide the future of cancer health disparities research. The statement represents a unified strategy by the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR), the American Cancer Society (ACS), the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO), and the National Cancer Institute (NCI) to foster cooperation across the cancer research community to ensure that all patients — regardless of social demographics, socioeconomic status, or the communities in which they live — benefit from cancer research.

July 20, 2017

On July 19, the House Appropriations Committee voted to advance legislation to provide a $1.1 billion increase to the National Institutes of Health (NIH). Given the funding environment on Capitol Hill, it’s unlikely the appropriations bill passed by the Committee will be signed into law-as is. 

July 19, 2017

The American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) today issued a position statement aimed at contributing to the national dialogue on rising cancer drug prices. The statement, which asserts that any solutions must also preserve patients' access to care and foster innovation, analyzes a wide array of options and recommends that a panel of stakeholders be established to determine which proposals will be effective and develop a uniform approach for assessing the value of drugs.  

July 17, 2017

On July 17, 2017, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved neratinib (NERLYNX, Puma Biotechnology, Inc.) for the extended adjuvant treatment of adult patients with early stage HER2-overexpressed/amplified breast cancer, to follow adjuvant trastuzumab-based therapy.

July 14, 2017

The American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) remains opposed to the revised Better Care Reconciliation Act (BCRA). Despite the changes to the legislation, released by the Senate yesterday, the bill runs counter to ASCO’s core mission, which is to ensure that patients with cancer have meaningful access to high-quality care. Moreover, it fails to meet with ASCO’s guiding principles for health reform by cutting Medicaid and eroding critical patient protections.

July 14, 2017

On July 13, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) released its proposed rule for 2018 Medicare physician reimbursement. CMS estimates that in calendar year 2018 reimbursement for the hematology/oncology specialty is set to remain the same, though the actual impact on individual physician practices will depend on the mix of services provided.

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