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.

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August 22, 2018

Advanced practice providers (APPs) have increasingly become integral members of the oncology care delivery team, according to the first large-scale study of nurse practitioners (NPs) and physician assistants (PAs) in oncology published today in the Journal of Oncology Practice. The “Understanding the Role of Advanced Practice Providers in the U.S.” study was conducted as a collaboration of the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO), the American Academy of PAs (AAPA), the Association of Physician Assistants in Oncology (APAO), the Advanced Practitioner Society for Hematology and Oncology (APSHO), and the Oncology Nursing Society (ONS).

August 20, 2018

On August 20, 2018, the Food and Drug Administration approved pembrolizumab (KEYTRUDA®, Merck & Co., Inc.) in combination with pemetrexed and platinum as first-line treatment of patients with metastatic, non-squamous non-small cell lung cancer (NSqNSCLC), with no EGFR or ALK genomic tumor aberrations.

August 17, 2018

On August 16, 2018, the Food and Drug Administration granted accelerated approval to nivolumab (Opdivo, Bristol-Myers Squibb Company Inc.) for patients with metastatic small cell lung cancer (SCLC) with progression after platinum-based chemotherapy and at least one other line of therapy.

August 16, 2018

The American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) warns that Medicaid work requirements may hinder patients’ access to essential cancer care and reduce the already limited time physicians are able to spend with their patients. In a new position statement released today, ASCO also recommends that federal and state policymakers take specific steps to ensure that new Medicaid requirements will not harm patients with cancer.  

August 16, 2018

Citizens around the country have an open invitation to host their own events in their communities with support and resources offered by the Biden Cancer Initiative in conjunction with the National Biden Cancer Summit to be held on September 21 in Washington, D.C. 

August 16, 2018

On August 16, 2018, the Food and Drug Administration approved lenvatinib capsules (Lenvima®, Eisai Inc.) for first-line treatment of patients with unresectable hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC).

August 16, 2018

On August 16, 2018, the Food and Drug Administration updated the prescribing information for Keytruda (pembrolizumab) and Tecentriq (atezolizumab) to require the use of an FDA-approved companion diagnostic test to determine PD-L1 levels in tumor tissue from patients with locally advanced or metastatic urothelial cancer who are cisplatin-ineligible.

August 10, 2018

Cory Wiegert has been named Chief Executive Officer of CancerLinQ LLC, a wholly owned non-profit subsidiary of ASCO, and as an Executive Vice President for ASCO

August 9, 2018

ASCO and Friends of Cancer Research have submitted to the Food and Drug Administration recommended language for five guidance documents on ways to broaden eligibility criteria for cancer clinical trials by addressing five specific areas: minimum age requirements for trial enrollment, HIV/AIDS status, brain metastases, organ dysfunction, and prior and concurrent malignancies.

August 8, 2018

On Aug. 8, 2018, the Food and Drug Administration approved mogamulizumab-kpkc (Poteligeo, Kyowa Kirin, Inc.) for adult patients with relapsed or refractory mycosis fungoides (MF) or Sézary syndrome (SS) after at least one prior systemic therapy.

August 8, 2018

ASCO strongly opposes the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) decision to allow Medicare Advantage plans to employ step therapy across physician-administered and self-administered drugs under Medicare Part B and Part D.

August 7, 2018

In the latest ASCO in Action Podcast, ASCO CEO Dr. Clifford A. Hudis discusses the recently released Medicare Physician Fee Schedule (MPFS) proposed rule. The MPFS is a complete listing of all fees Medicare uses to reimburse doctors and other providers and suppliers under a fee-for-service payment system.

August 7, 2018

Representatives from ASCO and other medical specialty groups recently met with officials from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to discuss the 2019 Medicare Physician Fee Schedule (MPFS). The meeting provided Administration officials with an opportunity to explain provisions in the 2019 MPFS proposed rule and for stakeholders to ask questions and express their concerns with the proposal.

August 6, 2018

The agenda for the 2018 ASCO Oncology Practice Conference has been finalized. The conference will take place September 27, 2018, at the JW Marriott Phoenix Desert Ridge in Phoenix, Ariz., and registration is open. The hotel reservation and early registration deadline is August 22 at 11:59 p.m. (EDT).

August 3, 2018

Merit-based Incentive Payment System (MIPS) final score and performance feedback are now available for review on the Quality Payment Program website for physicians that participated in MIPS in 2017.