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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Tune in to the ASCO in Action podcast series for analysis and commentary on cancer policy and practice issues. The podcast is available through iTunes or Google Play.

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May 26, 2020

In an open letter, the Regulatory Relief Coalition (RRC) called on all health plans in the United States to suspend prior authorization requirements for both COVID-19 and non-COVID-19-related services during the novel coronavirus pandemic. The Association for Clinical Oncology (ASCO) is a member of RRC, which is a group of national physician specialty organizations advocating for regulatory burden reduction in Medicare.  

May 18, 2020

A new infographic in the May 2020 print and online issues of JCO Oncology Practice (JCO OP) outlines paths to implementing the American Society of Clinical Oncology’s (ASCO) Patient-Centered Oncology Payment (PCOP) model—an alternative payment model designed to support transformation in cancer care delivery and reimbursement while ensuring that patients with cancer have access to high-quality care.

May 12, 2020

On May 11, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) released the Hospital Inpatient Prospective Payment System (IPPS) proposed rule for 2021. Of particular note, CMS is proposing a new Medicare Severity-Diagnosis Related Group (MS-DRG) for chimeric antigen receptor T-cell therapy (CAR T-cell therapy).

May 1, 2020

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has confirmed ASCO’s Survey on COVID-19 in Oncology Registry (ASCO Registry) is an acceptable clinical trial registry for the attestation of the high-weighted practice Improvement Activity (IA), “COVID-19 Clinical Trials related to the Emergency Response & Preparedness,” under the Merit-based Incentive Payment System (MIPS).

April 24, 2020

On April 22, HHS announced the allocation of an additional $40.4 billion from the Public Health and Social Services Emergency Fund.

April 20, 2020

JCO Oncology Practice published an article and accompanying infographic  that examine the impact pharmacy benefit managers (PBMs) have on cancer care delivery. The article is part of the American Society of Clinical Oncology’s (ASCO) State of Cancer Care in America series, which explores challenges and opportunities in today’s oncology delivery system.

April 10, 2020

The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) announced that COVID-19 relief payments to hospitals, physicians, and other health care providers will begin arriving via direct deposit on April 10, 2020—to eligible providers throughout the U.S. health care system. The payments are grants, not loans, and do not have to be repaid.

March 31, 2020

To help ensure that health care providers have the resources necessary to care for patients during the COVID-19 pandemic, Congress and the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) took action to provide direct financial support to providers who have been impacted by the emergency.

March 27, 2020

Congress recently passed a third legislative package focused on stabilizing the United States economy and shoring up the health care system to ensure it is prepared to deal with the COVID-19 crisis. The bill includes key provisions that will impact the cancer care community, as well as patients with and survivors of cancer.

March 11, 2020

The American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) has developed a summary of updates from states and private payers in response to COVID-19. The summary includes information on coverage for laboratory tests, provider visits, telehealth, and other related care, along with changes to prior authorization requirements, network restrictions, and prescription refills, among other updates.

March 3, 2020

In a letter to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), the Association for Clinical Oncology (ASCO) expressed concerns regarding two provisions in the 2021 Affordable Care Act (ACA) Notice of Benefit and Payment Parameters proposed rule. This proposal, if implemented, would update the regulatory and financial standards applied to ACA Exchanges.

March 3, 2020

In a letter to Representatives Terri Sewell (AL), Adrian Smith (NE), Tony Cárdenas (CA), and John Shimkus (IL), the Association for Clinical Oncology (ASCO) conveyed its support for legislation the lawmakers introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives. The bill, H.R.

March 3, 2020

Starting January 1, 2021, there will be significant changes to the office and outpatient Evaluation and Management (E&M) services Current Procedural Terminology (CPT ®) codes (99202-99215), for both new and established patients. Practices, physicians, and staff must prepare in advance for these changes to ensure a successful transition next year and avoid any disruption in reimbursement.

February 4, 2020

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) announced that it is expanding its coverage of next generation sequencing (NGS) for use as a diagnostic tool for certain patients with cancer.

January 21, 2020

The American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO), submitted its Patient-Centered Oncology Payment (PCOP) model for consideration by the Physician-Focused Payment Model Technical Advisory Committee (PTAC). PTAC is an advisory group to the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), which sends recommendations to the Secretary of HHS on stakeholder proposals for a type of alternative payment model known as a physician-focused payment model (PFPM).

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