Navigation Links
ASTRO applauds MedPAC review of Stark law exception
Date:6/16/2010

The American Society for Radiation Oncology (ASTRO) commends the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC) for highlighting concerns about physician self-referral in cancer care in its report released yesterday. We urge the commission to make recommendations to Congress to end abuses of the physician self-referral law in radiation oncology enabled by the "in-office ancillary services exception."

"We are very pleased that key federal policymakers are fully aware of the ever-expanding schemes that are being used to generate profit at the expense of American taxpayers and cancer patients," Tim R. Williams, M.D., ASTRO chairman, said. "We appreciate the considerable effort that MedPAC and others are dedicating to examine these abuses, and we are confident that this hard work will pay off in sound policies that protect cancer patients and precious health care resources."

ASTRO's highest priority is excellence in cancer patient care. When a patient's medical condition requires a referral for specialized care, the treatment decision must be based on quality care and patient choice, not financial incentives. ASTRO believes it is wrong to create business enterprises centered on rewarding physicians for making referrals, yet we are increasingly seeing business ventures across the country designed to generate additional revenues within a group practice by incorporating radiation therapy. We believe these arrangements erode patient choice and can result in dramatic increases in one form of radiation therapy for prostate cancer, while the use of other clinically appropriate, significantly less expensive treatments, such as radiation seed implants or even "watchful waiting," have declined or disappeared. This may lead to unnecessary Medicare spending.

In its report released today, MedPAC noted that many physicians have expanded their practices in recent years to include radiation therapy and other services included in the ancillary services exception to the physician self-referral law, or Stark law. MedPAC said physician self-referral of services in the exception creates incentives to increase volume. MedPAC also noted that the exception was intended for "quick turnaround" services, such as lab tests or X-rays, provided during the same office visit. MedPAC acknowledged that radiation oncology involves multiple sessions and is rarely initiated on the same day as a cancer diagnosis. Rather, it takes several weeks to plan and then deliver radiation therapy.

MedPAC said it is considering several policy recommendations for changes in self-referral of radiation therapy, such as excluding radiation therapy from the exception, limiting the exception to "clinical integrated" practices, and improving payment accuracy.

ASTRO appreciates MedPAC's recognition of the problems of self-referral in radiation oncology. We agree that the preferred long-term solution is to develop payment systems that reward quality over volume, and we support MedPAC's approach to find a more immediate solution that addresses self-referral. ASTRO's position is that radiation therapy should be removed from the Stark law's exception, and we are interested in working with MedPAC, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and Congress on the proposed option to require group practices to demonstrate "clinical integration" to be able to provide radiation therapy through the Stark law exception.


'/>"/>

Contact: Nicole Napoli
nicolen@astro.org
703-839-7336
American Society for Radiation Oncology
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. ASTRO participates in FDA meeting on radiation safety
2. Florida radiation council endorses ASTRO patient protection plan
3. ASTRO patient education program recognized by AAA Awards
4. Gulf Oil Spill Goes from Disaster to Catastrophe
5. Larson, McBride named 2010 ASTRO Gold Medalists
6. Motorcycle Cancer Risk and ELF EMF Radiation Invasion of Gastrointestinal Melatonin
7. Rotavirus Vaccine Helps Kids Avoid Severe Gastro Illness
8. Study finds rotavirus vaccine greatly reduces hospitalizations for acute gastroenteritis in children
9. Dynowatt Offers Facebook Fans a Chance to See the Rangers and Astros Play for Texas Bragging Rights
10. The effect of dietary supplements, acids and animal protein on gastrointestinal disorders
11. ASTRO releases SBRT for lung cancer report
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... ... A recent article published June 14 on E Online details ... to state that individuals are now more comfortable seeking to undergo not only the ... and cheek reduction. The Los Angeles area medical group, Beverly Hills Physicians (BHP) notes ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... 2016 , ... June 19, 2016 is World Sickle Cell Observance Day. In ... benefits of holistic treatments, Serenity Recovery Center of Marne, Michigan, has issued ... Sickle Cell Disease (SCD) is a disorder of the red blood cells, which can ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... (PRWEB) , ... June 24, 2016 , ... ... Conference and Scientific Sessions in Dallas that it will receive two significant new ... the grants came as PHA marked its 25th anniversary by recognizing patients, medical ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... June 24, 2016 , ... Dr. ... accelerated orthodontic treatment. Dr. Cheng has extensive experience with all areas of orthodontics, ... and accelerated osteogenic orthodontics. , Micro-osteoperforation is a revolutionary adjunct to orthodontic ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... June 24, 2016 , ... Topical BioMedics, Inc, makers of Topricin and MyPainAway Pain Relief ... a minimum wage raise to $12 an hour by 2020 and then adjusting it yearly ... lost value of the minimum wage, assure the wage floor does not erode again, and ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:6/23/2016)... Revolutionary technology includes multi-speaker listening ... industry leaders in advanced audiology and hearing aid technology, ... ™, the world,s first internet connected hearing aid that ...      (Photo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20160622/382240 ) , ... ,world firsts,: , TwinLink™ - the first ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... 23, 2016 The vast majority of dialysis ... facility.  Treatments are usually 3 times a week, with ... including travel time, equipment preparation and wait time.  This ... grueling for patients who are elderly and frail.  Many ... and rehabilitation centers for some duration of time. ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... FRANKLIN, Tenn. , June 23, 2016 ... for automating, integrating and transforming the patient ... launch of several innovative new products and ... depth of its revenue cycle offerings. These ... establish more efficient workflows, remain compliant in ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: