The increasing focus on clinical measurements, the need for large data sources, and population health management have raised new questions that are particularly pertinent to cancer care, such as how to organize the data in a meaningful way, and how to translate the “big data” to the individual patient. Amy Abernethy, MD, PhD, Chief Medical Officer and Senior Vice President, Oncology, Flatiron Health, NY, had spent years at Duke University’s Cancer Institute and has recently joined Flatiron Health with the goal of finding solutions to these questions. OPM asked Dr Abernethy to discuss the implications of big data for oncologists and oncology practice administrators.
Portland, OR, was the site of the Association of Community Cancer Centers (ACCC)’s “How To” conference for the entire cancer care team. More than 600 attendees embraced the opportunity to network and follow 2 tracks of programming on October 21-23, 2015. ACCC’s President, Steven L. D’Amato, BSPharm, RPh, BCOP, has pursued a refocusing on community practice as an important part of his mission, which was reflected in the conference programs.
Discussions of site-neutrality reimbursement for oncology services have centered on flawed comparisons of Medicare reimbursement methodologies that would deprive patients of the best available care, according to the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) policy statement (ASCO. J Clin Oncol. 2015 Oct 26. Epub ahead of print).
Dramatic Reimbursement Changes Coming: SGR Is Out and MACRA Is In, but It Will Not Be Easy for Practices
When the federal Sustainable Growth Rate (SGR) rollercoaster ended in repeal, physicians across the country sighed with relief. There would be no more waiting for Congress to modify the automatic double-digit reductions that the annual SGR calculations threatened. However, the reality of the new reimbursement adjustments looming from the legislation that replaced the SGR, now known as MACRA (Medicare Access and Children’s Health Insurance Program Reauthorization Act), is right around the corner.
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS)’s planned reimbursement of advance care planning services in 2016 is being greeted with enthusiasm by the oncology community. Advance care planning comprises the discussion of options for palliative care, end-of-life care, and advance directives.
The following sections will assist healthcare professionals and payers by providing appropriate coding and billing information associated with the treatment of melanoma. Although new claims cannot be submitted with ICD-9-CM codes as of 10/1/15, these may still be needed for submitting old claims that occurred before 10/1/15. We will, therefore, continue to provide the 2 sets of codes through the end of 2015.
In August, the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) released its much-anticipated “mega-guidance” on the 340B Drug Pricing Program, proposing new limits on the program but stopping short of a complete overhaul, which prompted mixed reviews from healthcare stakeholders. The Association of Community Cancer Centers (ACCC) has long advocated for more clarity in the program, and we commend HRSA for taking this important step amid legal challenges and congressional pressure.
Employment at will (EAW) is a concept that did not exist at one time in America’s past. In 1877, Horace G. Wood articulated the doctrine in A Treatise on the Law of Master and Servant. The concept of EAW must be placed in historical perspective. In the post–Civil War era, the Industrial Revolution went into full swing, and with it came a strong demand for labor. Before that, labor demand was limited, and a national employment policy was practically nonexistent.
Philanthropic individuals can contribute a wide variety of assets to charity. In addition to the social good that comes with the contribution, there may also be a financial benefit to the donor through an income tax charitable deduction for the charitable gift. However, the one asset that is often overlooked when it comes to charitable contributions is life insurance.
The Affordable Care Act (ACA) was created by the government to provide patients access to affordable medicines and services they need, “especially for the sickest among us,”1 but from what I have uncovered, at least in cancer care, this may not be the case.
Infertility and early menopause associated with cancer therapy can present medical and emotional challenges for patients and clinicians, according to Ann H. Partridge, MD, MPH, Medical Oncologist, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Boston. Dr Partridge presented results of a survey at the 2015 Breast Cancer Symposium, suggesting that cancer survivors who become infertile as a result of cancer treatment are at risk for emotional distress, often associated with unresolved grief and depression.
The following trials represent a selection of key clinical trials that are currently recruiting patients for inclusion in investigations of new therapies or new combinations of available therapies for patients with lung cancer. Each clinical trial description includes the NLM Identifier to be used as a reference with ClinicalTrials.gov. The information below can help oncology practice managers and providers direct their eligible patients to one of these clinical trials.
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