The Association for Clinical Oncology (ASCO), as part of the Cancer Leadership Council (CLC), sent a letter to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) offering the group’s perspective on progress to date in the effort to vaccinate people with cancer and other serious health concerns against COVID-19.
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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The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) announced it will hold physicians harmless from Merit-based Incentive Payment System (MIPS) penalties due to the significant disruptions the COVID-19 public health emergency placed on physician practices’ performance in 2020.
Bipartisan legislation that would require group health insurance plans to implement critical patient protections from step therapy protocols was recently introduced in the United States Senate. The Association for Clinical Oncology (the Association) supports the measure—S. 464, the Safe Step Act—and its aim to ensure patients have timely access to care. The Association is urging Senators to cosponsor the legislation.
President Biden signed an Executive Order (EO) calling for a 100-day review of the United States’ (U.S.) pharmaceutical supply chains in an effort to create more resilient and secure access to essential pharmaceuticals while reducing over reliance on foreign competitors. This EO is driven largely by the personal protective equipment and ventilator shortages healthcare workers experienced during the COVID-19 pandemic as well as other critical supply shortages in non-healthcare sectors.
A new online community will help increase communication and collaboration between members of state and regional oncology societies.
On February 26, 2021, the Food and Drug Administration granted accelerated approval to melphalan flufenamide (Pepaxto, Oncopeptides AB) in combination with dexamethasone for adult patients with relapsed or refractory multiple myeloma who have received at least four prior lines of therapy and whose disease is refractory to at least one proteasome inhibitor, one immunomodulatory agent, and one CD-38 directed monoclonal antibody.
The American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) recently released the ASCO Oncology Clinician Well-Being Task Force Roadmap. The document outlines a five-year plan to improve the quality of cancer care by enhancing the wellbeing of oncology clinicians and sustainability of oncology practices.
The Association of Clinical Oncology congratulates the eleven practices that prioritized the quality of care they provide by achieving the Quality Oncology Practice Initiative (QOPI®) Certification in the second half of 2020.
On February 22, 2021, the Food and Drug Administration approved cemiplimab-rwlc (Libtayo, Regeneron Pharmaceuticals, Inc.) for the first-line treatment of patients with advanced non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) (locally advanced who are not candidates for surgical resection or definitive chemoradiation or metastatic) whose tumors have high PD-L1 expression (Tumor Proportion Score [TPS] > 50%) as determined by an FDA-approved test, with no EGFR, ALK or ROS1 aberrations.
As part of ASCO’s work to reduce the global burden of cancer, the Society is collaborating with the American College of Cardiology (ACC) to expand its NCD Academy to include a cancer course.
The American Society of Clinical Oncology’s (ASCO) Road to Recovery Report: Learning from the COVID-19 Experience to Improve Clinical Research and Cancer Care, among other recommendations, calls for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to establish a special enrollment period on the federal health insurance exchange, abandon plans that limit access to healthcare, and enact policies that enhance access to care for patients with cancer. ASCO applauds the Biden administration for its recent actions supporting policies that aim to promote and protect access to high-quality, equitable cancer care, as outlined in the “Road to Recovery” report.
In the midst of growing concerns that patients with cancer have limited access to the COVID-19 vaccines, the Association for Clinical Oncology (ASCO) and American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network (ACS CAN), advocacy affiliate of the American Cancer Society, today issued a joint letter to every state governor in the United States urging them to prioritize patients with cancer in the distribution of COVID-19 vaccines in accordance with U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidelines.
The Association for Clinical Oncology (ASCO) is calling on Congress to continue their bipartisan support of federally funded research. Robust, sustained, and predictable funding growth for the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the National Cancer Institute (NCI) baseline budget are critical in advancing our nation’s work towards combating, and ultimately curing, diseases like cancer.
ASCO has developed a free educational series to help the oncology community learn more about the role of social determinants of health in cancer care and cancer outcomes.
JCO Oncology Practice recently published an editorial that examines the intensified burnout oncology practitioners are experiencing due the COVID-19 pandemic and outlines critical interventions to support oncologists now and throughout a long-term recovery. The article was written by past, current, and select members of the American Society of Clinical Oncology’s (ASCO) Ethics Committee and Clinician Well-Being Task Force.