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June 19

The Real-Life Patient Impact of Pharmacy Benefit Managers

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) recently released a final rule for Medicare Part D that codified its decision to allow Medicare Advantage plans to use step therapy, or “fail first,” for new starts of drugs for cancer and other serious diseases.1

June 19

Two-Sided Risk in the Oncology Care Model

The US healthcare system remains one of the most inefficient healthcare systems in the world. The Bloomberg Health-Care Efficiency Index ranked the United States 54th among 56 countries in 2018, tied with Azerbaijan and only ahead of Bulgaria.1 This occurs even though the United States spends $10,244 per capita annually on healthcare, a figure representing 17%

June 19

Low Prices of Some Lifesaving Drugs Make them Impossible to Get

When Andrew Archuleta’s bladder cancer returned two years ago, his doctor prescribed periodic treatments of a powerful immunotherapy designed to stave off another recurrence. But the latest round, scheduled for May, was abruptly canceled because of a severe shortage of the drug.

June 19

Time to Scrutinize PBMs’ Outsized Role in Rx Decision-Making

The increasingly powerful role that pharmacy benefit managers play in the prices and availability of prescription drugs is one that merits careful scrutiny from regulators, says an AMA Council on Medical Service report whose recommendations were adopted at the 2019 AMA Annual Meeting in Chicago.

June 19

German Patients get the Latest Drugs for Just $11. Can Such a Model Work in the U.S.?

Patients who come to the Havelhöhe cancer clinic in the leafy outskirts of Germany’s capital are often very sick. Struggling with advanced-stage cancers, many need strong doses of expensive, cutting-edge chemotherapy that can run into the hundreds of thousands of dollars.

June 19

HHS’s Ideas for Rearranging Medicare Would Raise Costs for Seniors

Eight in 10 Americans believe prescription drug costs are too high, according to a Kaiser Family Foundation poll. Given this widespread frustration, it's easy to see why the Trump administration has made reducing the cost of medicines a top priority.

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COA supports a wide variety of initiatives for community oncology practices, professionals, and patient advocates. We give community
oncologists and hematologists a powerful voice to help drive policymaking, innovation, and reform of the cancer care system.