ASCO in Action

ASCO in Action provides the latest news and analysis related to critical policy issues affecting the cancer community, updates on the Association for Clinical Oncology’s ongoing advocacy efforts, and opportunities for members and others in the cancer care community to take action.

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May 10, 2022

A new report found that 13% of prior authorization denials in the Medicare Advantage (MA) program were for service requests that met Medicare fee-for-service coverage rules, likely delaying or preventing patient care. The report, conducted by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Office of Inspector General (OIG), on the impact of prior authorization within MA found that imaging services, stays in post-acute facilities, and injections were three prominent service types among the denials that met Medicare coverage rules.

May 10, 2022

Bipartisan leaders of the House Energy and Commerce Committee introduced a comprehensive legislative package to reauthorize the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) user fee agreements. The package included provisions to strengthen the accelerated approval process and increase diversity of clinical trials.

May 9, 2022

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) released the Contract Year 2023 Policy and Technical Changes to the Medicare Advantage (MA) and Medicare Prescription Drug Benefit Programs final rule. The rule finalizes the administration’s efforts to improve consumer protections, reduce disparities, and improve equity in the MA and Medicare Part D programs in 2023 and beyond.

May 5, 2022

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recently announced two proposed rules.

April 29, 2022

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services released the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act 2023 Notice of Benefit and Payment Parameters final rule. The rule finalizes regulatory changes in the individual and small group health insurance markets and establishes parameters and requirements issuers need to design plans and set rates for the 2023 plan year. The rule also aims to improve enrollment policies for qualified health plans offered on the federal Marketplace to ensure consumer access to quality and affordable coverage and to advance health equity.

April 26, 2022

The Association for Clinical Oncology (ASCO) is calling on Congress to continue their bipartisan support for cancer research. Robust, sustained, and predictable funding growth for the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the National Cancer Institute (NCI) are vital in our nation’s efforts to combat and ultimately cure diseases like cancer.

April 21, 2022

The Association for Clinical Oncology (ASCO) responded to a Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services-issued Request for Information on the barriers that people face when trying to enroll and maintain health care coverage in Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program. ASCO is committed to advocating for coverage and reimbursement, access and quality, and cancer research and prevention policies that promote high-quality, equitable cancer care throughout the health care system.

April 19, 2022

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services issued the fiscal year 2023 Medicare Hospital Inpatient Prospective Payment System (IPPS) and Long‑Term Care Hospital (LTCH) Prospective Payment System (PPS) proposed rule. In addition to updating Medicare payment rates and policies for inpatient hospitals in FY 2023, the proposed rule aims to measure health care quality disparities, improve the quality of maternity care, and obtain stakeholder feedback to advance health equity.

April 12, 2022

From April 4-8, U.S. members of the Association for Clinical Oncology (ASCO) participated in the 2022 ASCO Week of Action, which was held in conjunction with the Association’s annual Advocacy Summit. During the Week of Action, advocates from across the country sent a record 920 letters to Members of Congress through ASCO’s ACT Network urging them to take action on important policies to improve access to high-quality, equitable care for people with cancer. During the Advocacy Summit 132 ASCO members from 43 states and the District of Columbia held nearly 200 virtual meetings with Members of Congress and staff to urge action on the same issues.

April 7, 2022

The Association for Clinical Oncology (ASCO) presented its Advocate of the Year Award to Edward Balaban, DO, FACP, FASCO for his valuable contributions to ASCO’s advocacy efforts. The award recognizes volunteers who have gone above and beyond in the past year, advocating on behalf of patients and providers to improve cancer care and research. 

April 7, 2022

The Association for Clinical Oncology (ASCO) presented its Advocate of the Year Award to Edward Balaban, DO, FACP, FASCO for his valuable contributions to ASCO’s advocacy efforts. The award recognizes volunteers who have gone above and beyond in the past year, advocating on behalf of patients and providers to improve cancer care and research.

April 4, 2022

The Association for Clinical Oncology (ASCO) congratulates Dr. Norman E. “Ned” Sharpless on his successful tenure as Director of the National Cancer Institute (NCI). During his five years at NCI, Dr. Sharpless guided the Institute to advance the goals of the Cancer Moonshot Initiative, including important work to modernize cancer clinical trials to reflect an improved understanding of biology and the new types of therapies available to treat cancer. We are hopeful that these efforts will endure even after Dr. Sharpless’ departure later this month.

March 31, 2022

On December 10, 2021, President Biden signed the “Protecting Medicare and American Farmers from Sequester Cuts Act,” which phased in the Medicare sequester cuts that had been paused during the COVID-19 Public Health Emergency (PHE), starting April 1, 2022. From April 1, through June 30, 2022, the cut will be 1%. The cut will return to 2% on July 1, 2022.

March 29, 2022

President Biden’s Fiscal Year (FY) 2023 budget request includes $5 billion for the Advanced Research Projects Agency for Health (ARPA-H), the proposed new biomedical research agency focused on high-risk, bold, translational research projects. While the Association for Clinical Oncology (ASCO) strongly believes in the stated mission of ARPA-H, we are concerned that the Administration’s FY 2023 budget request invests in ARPA-H at the expense of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the National Cancer Institute (NCI).

March 29, 2022

The Association for Clinical Oncology (ASCO) submitted comments to the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) in response to the agency’s Request for Information (RFI) on electronic prior authorization (ePA).

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