Navigation Links
House Bill to Improve Accuracy of Medicare Reimbursement Introduced: Members of Congress Seek to Stem Growing Healthcare Coverage Shortfalls, Community Oncology Alliance Advocates for Swift Passage of Bill

WASHINGTON, March 10 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Representatives Gene Green (D-TX), Ed Whitfield (R-KY), Mike Ross (D-AR), Ed Towns (D-NY), Diana DeGette (D-CO), Mike Rogers (R-MI), Betty Sutton (D-OH), Bart Gordon (D-TN), Lee Terry (R-NE) and Ralph Hall (R-TX) today introduced H.R. 1392.

This bill will amend title XVIII of the Social Security Act to ensure more appropriate payment amounts for drugs and biologicals under Part B of the Medicare Program by excluding customary prompt pay discounts extended to wholesalers from the manufacturer's Average Sales Price (ASP). These discounts artificially reduce Medicare Part B drug reimbursement rates for community oncology clinics, jeopardizing the viability of these providers. The bill is a step forward in addressing problems with Medicare reimbursement for cancer drugs.

"This bipartisan bill is imperative for millions of Americans across the nation to have access to treatment at community oncology clinics and to the life-saving medications they need," said U.S. Rep. Gene Green (D-TX).

Excluding distributor prompt pay discounts from the ASP methodology is consistent with existing policy and will create greater uniformity among federal healthcare programs, as these terms already are excluded from the Medicaid Average Manufacturer Price (AMP) methodology.

The U.S. has the best cancer care delivery system in the world, in which 84 percent of Americans receive quality, compassionate care in community cancer clinics. However, the cancer care delivery system is now in first-stage crisis because Medicare has substantially cut payment for cancer drugs and essential services.

Community cancer clinics have had to close satellite facilities and cut staff. Smaller clinics are struggling to operate and more will close. Patients with insufficient or no insurance, especially seniors covered by Medicare, are increasingly being sent elsewhere for treatment and some patients are actually foregoing treatment. The crisis will deepen as demand for cancer care is now starting to exceed the supply of oncologists during the next 11 years, when we will be short an oncologist for every 1 in 3 cancer patients.

"This is a national problem that is affecting the delivery of cancer care treatment to our most vulnerable patients," said U.S. Representative Ed Whitfield (R-KY). "It is critical that we address this issue because these cuts to the Medicare reimbursements are having an adverse impact to physicians, related practitioners and their patients in all our communities."

"This bipartisan bill will help people with cancer receive treatment in their communities. It's important that we act now to help people who need these life-saving medications," said U.S. Representative Diana DeGette (D-CO), Vice Chair of the Committee on Energy and Commerce, which has jurisdiction over health care policy.

The problem not only centers on payments for cancer drugs, but also on essential services provided to cancer patients, such as treatment planning, which are not reimbursed by Medicare.

"On behalf of community oncology clinics, I thank Congressmen Green and Whitfield and their colleagues for their leadership. The introduction of this bill is a welcome and needed first step in supporting community cancer clinics," said Patrick Cobb, M.D., president of the Community Oncology Alliance (COA) and managing partner of Hematology-Oncology Centers of the Northern Rockies in Billings, Montana. "However, more has to be done because clinics provide cancer care to their patients that is not reimbursed by Medicare."

About Community Oncology Alliance (COA)

COA is a non-profit organization dedicated solely to community oncology. COA was founded by community oncology to advocate for patients and providers in the community oncology setting, where 84 percent of Americans with cancer are treated. In only six years of existence, COA has mobilized community oncology to become more politically active, and increased awareness on Capitol Hill about the community cancer care delivery system. Additionally, COA has brought together community oncology practices from across the country to share information in order to enhance the effectiveness and efficiency of the cancer care they provide to their patients.

Currently, COA is working with the Congress in proving proactive solutions designed to protect the viability of the nation's cancer care delivery system and patients' access to quality, affordable cancer care. The cancer death rate in the U.S. has declined due to earlier detection, the quality of treatment, and the accessibility of cancer care. However, according to the American Cancer Society, men still have an approximately one in two lifetime risk of developing cancer, with a risk of one in three for women. For more information, please visit

SOURCE Community Oncology Alliance
Copyright©2009 PR Newswire.
All rights reserved

Related medicine news :

1. Webcast Alert: Kaiser Permanente Residency Program Open House
2. Houston Texans Star Players Ahman Green and Matt Schaub Help Easter Seals, Avondale House and Local Families Tackle Autism
3. Retailers Welcome Senate Passage of Mental Health Parity Bill, Urge House to Adopt Senate Version at Subcommittee Markup
4. CRC Health Group Announces Acquisition of Durhams Structure House, Weight Loss Facility
5. Senate, House Announce Agreement to Renew, Improve Childrens Health Insurance Program Now
6. Statement on House/Senate Agreement on SCHIP Legislation
7. Prime Access Creates Groundbreaking Ads Targeting Urban Teens for the White Houses National Youth Anti-Drug Media Campaign
8. Benjamin England, Former FDA Regulatory Counsel, to Testify on FDA Import Strategic Plan Before House Appropriations Subcommittee
9. House of Representatives Passes Stop AIDS in Prison Act of 2007
10. Green Seal Ramps Up Environmental Standard for Household Cleaners
11. Pelosi Statement on House Vote to Extend Family and Medical Leave for Military Families
Post Your Comments:
(Date:11/30/2015)... ... November 30, 2015 , ... ... last 15 years, announced today that Michigan-based Family Health Center (FHC) has selected ... over 45 years, FHC was awarded the largest Affordable Care Act grant for ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... Ill. (PRWEB) , ... November 30, 2015 , ... ... Decision Support Solutions, announced at the Radiology Society of North America (RSNA) annual ... have seen over 60% growth from 2014. Throughout 2015, the company has ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... , ... November 30, 2015 , ... ... publishing magazines and websites specializing in independent living, assisted living and all other ... and Alzheimer’s awareness and research remains a top priority. , ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... , ... November 30, 2015 ... ... is pleased to announce the speakers for “Value-Based Payer-Provider Partnerships: Three Case ... from three innovative value-based care arrangements: Essentia Health and UCare, MissionPoint Health ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... PA (PRWEB) , ... November 30, 2015 , ... ... software provider, has verified that their Vasont Universal Integrator (VUI) extension unites with ... creating, editing, and managing content as a continuous process with the latest release ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:11/30/2015)... , Nov. 30, 2015   Royal Philips ... Implant, the industry,s first MRI guided user interface and ... of patients with MR Conditional implants, such as knee ... 2015 Radiological Society of North America Annual Meeting ... and supports diagnostic confidence of this growing patient population. ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... BOCA RATON, Fla. , Nov. 30, ... of Public Research (the Institute) announced today that ... , a medical device start-up company with technology developed ... creation based on publicly-funded research, and bridges early funding ... -based universities and research institutions. ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... Nov. 30, 2015 Baxalta Incorporated ... leader dedicated to delivering transformative therapies to ... conditions, today announced the launch and first ... an extended circulating half-life recombinant factor VIII ... full-length ADVATE [Antihemophilic Factor (Recombinant)]. The treatment ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: