Navigation Links
ASTRO Chairman Michael Steinberg, M.D., FASTRO, reaffirms Society's commitment to ending self-referral
Date:6/27/2013

Fairfax, Va., June 27, 2013 A new study, "Use of Advanced Treatment Technologies Among Men at Low Risk of Dying from Prostate Cancer," published Tuesday, June 25, 2013, in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA), by Bruce L. Jacobs, MD, MPH, et. al., analyzes treatment data for 55,947 prostate cancer patients (aged 66 years or older) in the Surveillance, Epidemiology and End Results (SEER)-Medicare database from 2004 to 2009. The study found that the use of advanced treatment technologies increased from 32 percent to 44 percent among men with low-risk prostate cancer, from 36 percent to 57 percent among men with high risk of non-cancer mortality, and from 13 percent to 24 percent among men unlikely to die from prostate cancer. In discussion, Dr. Jacobs, et. al., raise several concerns about increased treatment: "aggressive direct-to-consumer marketing and incentives associated with fee-for-service payment may promote the use of advanced treatment technologies;" "more diligence is needed to reduce the potentially unnecessary treatment of men with a low risk of dying from prostate cancer;" and "more immediately, policy change may help curtail the excessive use of advanced treatment technologies among patients least likely to benefit."

Michael L. Steinberg, MD, FASTRO, chairman of the American Society for Radiation Oncology's (ASTRO) Board of Directors, states that Dr. Jacobs, et.al.'s study reaffirms the Society's commitment to closing the self-referral loophole for radiation therapy within the Ethics in Patient Referrals Act, also known as the self-referral law.

ASTRO supports the use of intensity modulated radiation therapy (IMRT) as an appropriate, effective treatment for prostate cancer patients, however, IMRT should be carefully considered along with other effective treatments and management options, including active surveillance, by patients and their doctors. Treatment decisions should not be based on the physician's potential for profit, yet we believe profit-motivated IMRT overuse is rampant due to the proliferation of urology ownership of radiation therapy centers. The abuse of this expensive technology is allowed by a loophole in the federal physician self-referral law. We agree with Dr. Jacobs et. al.'s concerns that financial incentives may be negatively impacting treatment decisions, which we believe are compounded by ownership arrangements protected under the self-referral loophole.

ASTRO expects several independent studies will be published soon demonstrating that self-referral abuse in prostate cancer treatment, particularly among older men, is leading to unnecessary treatment, higher spending and inappropriate patient care. These new reports will add to the already significant body of evidence condemning self-referral abuse. In September 2012, a New England Journal of Medicine article authored by leading health policy experts called for closing the self-referral loophole for radiation therapy and other so-called "ancillary services." In the same month, the GAO issued a scathing report on self-referral in advanced diagnostic imaging titled "Higher Use of Advance Imaging Services by Providers Who Self-Refer Costing Medicare Millions" (GAO-12-966). On November 6, 2012, Bloomberg News published an investigative report indicting self-referral by demonstrating the real-world impact on patients' lives, which received in-depth follow-up by the local newspaper, the Monterey County Herald.

Cumulatively, all of these studies demonstrate that self-referral abuse drives overutilization of expensive technologies. Recently, several bipartisan groups, including the Bipartisan Policy Center and the Simpson-Bowles Moment of Truth project, as well as President Obama in his FY 2014 budget proposal, generally have endorsed ASTRO's recommended policy change to close the self-referral loophole. ASTRO agrees and urges Congress to act this year.

"All evidence confirms that the self-referral loophole must be closed to protect every patient and to preserve the Medicare program," said Dr. Steinberg. "This loophole endangers patients and erodes their trust in us as physicians. In addition, self-referral abuse wastes our nation's already stretched financial resources."


'/>"/>

Contact: Michelle Kirkwood
press@astro.org
703-286-1600
American Society for Radiation Oncology
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. Antibody therapy prevents gastrointestinal damage following radiation exposure in mice
2. Diagnostic Scans Tied to Radiation Risk for Gastro Patients
3. Gastro Woes Often Strike Rheumatoid Arthritis Patients
4. Not taking gastroprotective drugs prescribed with anti-inflammatory medicines
5. Football-related catastrophic brain injuries on the rise
6. Catastrophic Head Injuries to High School Football Players Rising
7. Gastroenterology special issue focuses on new directions of viral hepatitis care and research
8. Gastroenterology Societies issue sedation curriculum for gastrointestinal endoscopy
9. ASTRO wins 2012 Communicator Award
10. ASTRO chairman to testify at CARE Act hearing
11. IU gastroenterologist develops practice guidelines for most prevalent liver disease
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:3/24/2017)... ... March 24, 2017 , ... As the standards ... a communications platform that positions them as the go-to thought leader in all ... online publication as an always-on, always-fresh news, views and advocacy engine, called ONS ...
(Date:3/24/2017)... ... March 24, 2017 , ... ... at the Advanced ERISA Benefit Claims Litigation seminar in Chicago, Illinois. She ... Record, The majority of cases litigated under ERISA involve claims for long-term disability ...
(Date:3/24/2017)... , ... March 24, 2017 , ... Viewers who like ... of critical historical facts, cultural practices, goods, services, and societal issues tend to appreciate ... look into the popular practice of utilizing running events for causes around the world. ...
(Date:3/24/2017)... , ... March 24, 2017 , ... ... year of enhancements, upgrading their training and leads programs. , In February, 2017, ... for elite sales agents, Performance Partners is designed to teach how to maximize ...
(Date:3/24/2017)... ... 2017 , ... “Finding Christ Through Social Media: Year One ... the writer’s path toward true communion with God. “Finding Christ Through Social Media: ... creation of published author Lea Michelle Johnson, a follower of Christ, wife and ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:3/24/2017)... , March 24, 2017 A ReportsnReports.com report ... been growing rapidly as the global sales of Adcetris and Kadcyla ... in the antibody drug conjugates market is driven by large number ... and wider therapeutic window offered by ADCs. ... Browse 3 Tables and 94 Figures, 10 ...
(Date:3/24/2017)... DIEGO , March 24, 2017  GenomeDx Biosciences ... Resource Information Database) and Decipher® Prostate Cancer Classifier tests ... European Association of Urology (EAU) Congress held March 24 ... . The Annual EAU Congress is Europe,s ... most comprehensive research in the urological field. ...
(Date:3/24/2017)...  Provectus Biopharmaceuticals, Inc. (OTCQB: PVCT, www.provectusbio.com ... and dermatology biopharmaceutical company, today disclosed terms of ... (the "Definitive Financing") it entered into on March ... who are referred to in the Definitive Financing ... with the Securities and Exchange Commission.   ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: