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US Oncology's Innovent Oncology Division Announces First Agreement Between Rocky Mountain Cancer Centers and Colorado Public Employees' Retirement Association
Date:10/17/2008

Contract Contains Costs and Improves Patient Outcomes

HOUSTON, Oct. 17 /PRNewswire/ -- Innovent Oncology today announced that US Oncology-affiliated practice Rocky Mountain Cancer Centers (RMCC) has signed an agreement with the Colorado Public Employees' Retirement Association (PERA) to provide Patient Support Services to PERA's retired members undergoing cancer treatment at RMCC. The agreement represents the first occasion of services being offered through Innovent Oncology, which will work with RMCC to support PERA's members.

Innovent Oncology, US Oncology's newest services division, offers payers and oncologists solutions that integrate evidence-based treatment Pathways, patient support services and advance care planning to improve clinical outcomes while addressing costs.

"We're delighted our retirees now have access to these vital patient support services giving them added comfort and encouragement through a very difficult time," said Wendy Tenzyk, Insurance Director for Colorado PERA. "We also expect this program will help us manage overall cancer treatment costs for both our retirees and our plan."

PERA has more than 80,000 retirees statewide. PERA operates a self-insured health plan administered by Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Colorado that covers 36,000 of those retirees and their dependents, and PERA's agreement with RMCC covers those Anthem members. On average, nearly 1,000 of PERA's Anthem members receive cancer treatment each year. Physicians affiliated with Rocky Mountain Cancer Centers treat approximately half of those patients, and provide care for 40-50% of all cancer patients in Colorado.

"We are very pleased to be working with PERA to support its retired members and their families through our unique approach to improving the patient experience throughout their entire cancer treatment," said Kirby Ryan, national sales director for Innovent Oncology.

Innovent Oncology bundles core services and offers them to health plans on a per participant basis. By integrating these services, patients benefit from added support services throughout their treatment; physicians gain access to evidence-based treatment Pathways; and payers benefit from the valuable insight available through enhanced data capture and analysis, outcomes measurement and utilization review. This integrated approach improves the patient's experience and outcomes, increases efficiency and provides for better resource utilization and cost management. Innovent Oncology was launched nationally last month.

About US Oncology

US Oncology, headquartered in Houston, works closely with physicians, manufacturers and payers to identify and deliver innovative services that enhance patient access to advanced cancer care. US Oncology supports one of the nation's foremost cancer treatment and research networks, accelerating the availability and use of evidence-based medicine and shared best practices.

US Oncology's expertise in supporting every aspect of the cancer care delivery system--from drug development to treatment and outcomes measurement--enables the company to help increase the efficiency and safety of cancer care. According to the company's last quarterly earnings report, US Oncology is affiliated with 1,220 physicians operating in 480 locations, including 92 radiation oncology facilities in 39 states. For more information, visit the company's Web site, http://www.usoncology.com.


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SOURCE US Oncology
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