Join ASCO’s Advocacy Summit Online Sept. 25-26; Advocate for Key Cancer Policy Issues

September 18, 2018

More than 100 oncology care providers from across the United States are heading to Capitol Hill September 25 – 26 to participate in the 2018 ASCO Advocacy Summit. Advocates will meet with Members of Congress and their staff to educate them on critical issues affecting individuals with cancer and their providers, and to encourage lawmakers to support cancer policies that will ensure access to high-quality, high-value cancer care.

ASCO volunteer advocates will focus on three major policy issues during their conversations with Congressional offices:

  • Medicaid Coverage for Clinical Trials: ASCO is calling on Members of Congress to support the CLINICAL TREATMENT Act, a bill recently introduced in the U. S. House of Representatives that would require Medicaid plans to cover routine care costs associated with clinical trials participation for patients with cancer.
  • Utilization Management: ASCO is calling on Congress to) to support the Restoring the Patient’s Voice Act which will enact sensible guardrails to protect patients from payer step therapy practices. ASCO is also asking member of the House to sign a letter to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) asking more transparency around prior authorization practices by Medicare Advantage plans.
  • Cancer Research FundingASCO is calling on Congress to pass a Fiscal Year (FY) 2019 spending bill that includes a $2 billion increase for the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and a commensurate increase for the National Cancer Institute (NCI). There has been bipartisan support for NIH funding over the last few years, including funding increases, but a continued investment in federally funded cancer research is needed to continue our nation’s progress against cancer.

This year’s Advocacy Summit will also feature remarks by Members of Congress, the presentation of a “Congressional Leadership Award” to a lawmaker who champions cancer-related policies, and a keynote speech from Mara Liasson, National Political Correspondent at National Public Radio. ASCO will also present the “Advocate of the Year” award to an ASCO member who has demonstrated exceptional advocacy efforts on behalf of individuals with cancer and their cancer care teams.

ASCO members not attending the Summit can support their colleagues’ efforts on Capitol Hill using the ACT Network to send messages to lawmakers urging them to take action to advance the policy priorities that will have the biggest impact on cancer research progress and patient care.

Follow the hashtag #ASCOAdvocacySummit on Twitter to see and share photos and updates from the Summit. Bookmark ASCO in Action to stay up-to-date on all of ASCO’s advocacy efforts.