Radiation Therapy Alliance Commends Congress for Passing Legislation to Ensure Access to Radiation Therapy Care for Nation’s Cancer Patients
December 18, 2015
WASHINGTON – The Radiation Therapy Alliance (RTA) – a non-profit organization representing freestanding radiation therapy centers that is dedicated to working with policymakers to advance logical, predictable payment reform to ensure patient access to quality cancer care – today commended lawmakers in the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives for passing the Patient Access and Medicare Protection Act (S. 2425).
The Hill Congress Blog
October 21, 2015
With each passing year, health outcomes and life expectancies in America continue to improve because of technological advances in medicine. Yet, as the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) report, the benefits of enhanced medical knowledge and advanced treatments have not been shared equally. In fact, even in the midst of sweeping reform, health disparities persist, especially among traditionally underserved minority populations.
228 Bipartisan Members of Congress Send Letters to CMS Urging Against 6% Proposed Cuts to Freestanding Radiation Therapy for Medicare Patients
September 30, 2015
WASHINGTON – The Radiation Therapy Alliance (RTA) – a non-profit organization representing free-standing radiation therapy centers dedicated to providing a greater understanding of the value of community-based cancer care and the importance of logical, predictable payment reform to ensure patient access to state-of-the-art, quality care – today applauded 228 bipartisan members of the U.S. Congress for signing letters to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) urging that the agency reconsider the proposed cuts to radiation therapy in the 2016 Physician Fee Schedule (PFS) Proposed Rule.
September 3, 2015
Cancer is a cruel disease. It is unpredictable and indiscriminate, and it continues to take nearly 600,000 American lives each year. Yet despite its unforgiving nature, countless patients continue to show resolve in the face of adversity. And with each passing day, more and more of our friends, family, and loved ones win the battle against cancer – something once considered impossible.
August 27, 2015
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services recently unveiled proposed changes to their payment approach for cancer care services delivered to American seniors. Hidden within the complicated language and updated payment codes lies a harsh reality for community-based oncology centers and, more importantly, the patients we serve.
October 17, 2014
On September 18, AuntMinnie.com reported on a study from the University of California, San Diego that was presented at the American Society for Radiation Oncology (ASTRO) annual meeting. The study asserted that Medicare reimbursement rates for freestanding oncology facilities far surpassed those for hospital-based centers.
October 8, 2014
For those of us who have never personally been affected by cancer, it can seem a surreal and distant concept; something that happens only to someone else’s family. Until it reaches into your own life, cancer is just a word — though one seemingly laden with emotion. It is a struggle we watch from afar, a battle we don’t quite grasp. As we grow older, we start to understand the disease. As loved ones are diagnosed — young and old and without discrimination — we are forced to learn. Even among fear and sadness, we become deliverers of optimism because it is the only thing we can give to those in need.
Inside Health Policy
September 3, 2014
Bipartisan groups of lawmakers in both chambers are urging CMS not to go through with proposed cuts in reimbursement for a procedure that kills cancer with targeted radiation. The lawmakers and radiation oncologists take issue with CMS' justification for one technical element of the proposal: that the vaults housing linear accelerators are indistinguishable from the medical-office buildings to which they join and therefore are not a direct practice expense.
The Register Herald
August 21, 2014
My colleagues and I were honored to host Congressman Nick Rahall during his recent visit to 21st Century Oncology’s Center For Cancer Care in Fairlea. We greatly appreciated the opportunity to highlight the importance of radiation therapy care in community practice.
Inside Health Policy
April 14, 2014
Radiation centers, imaging equipment makers and oncologists are pushing back against CMS' release of Medicare physician-pay data because they say the information is particularly misleading for services that involved expensive equipment and drugs.
Public Release of Medicare Data Creates More Confusion about the Economics of Freestanding Radiation Therapy Centers, Highlights Need for Payment Reform
April 10, 2014
The Radiation Therapy Alliance (RTA) – a non-profit organization representing leading freestanding radiation therapy centers and equipment manufacturers – today expressed concern that physician payment data released by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) fundamentally misrepresent the true economics of freestanding radiation oncology.
No Cut to Radiation Therapy in Medicare Physician Fee Schedule Final Rule, Future Uncertainty Persists
December 9, 2013
WASHINGTON – The Radiation Therapy Alliance (RTA) – a nonprofit organization representing 227 community-based radiation therapy centers – today commended the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) for withdrawing the proposal to cap certain freestanding radiation oncology reimbursements at the OPD/ASC rates in the CY 2014 Physician Fee Schedule Final Rule, issued November 27. While the Proposed Rule would have reduced payments by nearly 8%, the final rule is close to no change (relative to 2013) for free-standing radiation oncology providers.
October 28, 2013
As a radiation oncologist, I see the positive impact that innovations in cancer care have on patients’ health outcomes. During my 25 years in this profession, I have witnessed incredible advancements that are extending and enhancing the quality of cancer care and improving the lives of my patients. Unfortunately, that care is at risk.
October 3, 2013
New payment proposals from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) would continue a decade-long trend of payment reductions for community-based radiation cancer therapies. These reductions undermine providers’ ability to care for a growing number of Medicare beneficiaries with cancer.
October 2, 2013
WASHINGTON (October 2, 2013) – New payment proposals from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) would continue a decade-long trend of payment reductions for community-based radiation cancer therapies. These reductions undermine providers’ ability to care for a growing number of Medicare beneficiaries with cancer.
The Hill Congress Blog
September 24, 2013
Every day 10,000 Americans turn 65 and become eligible for Medicare. By 2030, one out of every five people in the United States will be in this age group. This poses unprecedented challenges for Medicare, not least of which is providing cancer care to this aging population. According to the National Institutes of Health, more than half of all newly diagnosed cancer patients are Medicare beneficiaries with over 70 percent of all cancer deaths occurring in this age group. Sound Medicare policies that ensure the availability of safe, effective, and comprehensive cancer treatment are more important than ever.
November 5, 2012
The Radiation Therapy Alliance (RTA) commended the U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) for mitigating "drastic cuts" in reimbursement for radiation oncology in its 2013 Physician Fee Schedule.
November 5, 2012
WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Radiation Therapy Alliance (RTA), which represents 225 community-based cancer care facilities in 21 states caring for approximately 80,000 cancer patients annually, commends the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) for mitigating drastic cuts to radiation oncology. The 2013 Physician Fee Schedule (PFS) Rule, released last week, updated radiation therapy equipment costs with data that the RTA provided and reduced the proposed 15 percent reimbursement cut to radiation oncology to 7 percent. CMS also increased the assumed number of radiation therapists to two in response to recommendations from the American Society for Radiation Oncology (ASTRO).
Fort Myers Beach Bulletin
October 10, 2012
My staff and I were pleased to welcome Zachary Zampella from Senator Marco Rubio's office to 21st Century Oncology's Fort Myers facility recently. Mr. Zampella's and Senator Rubio's willingness to learn more about the issues facing our community - particularly cancer patients here - is extremely important to the health and future of our residents.
Georgia Congressman Visits Middle Georgia To Tour Community Radiation Centers, Talk About Possible Healthcare Cuts
October 10, 2012
Georgia congressman Austin Scott was in middle Georgia today to discuss the value of life-saving radiation therapy in community-based centers around the state. Scott toured Radiation Oncology Services of America's Macon facility on Coliseum Drive this afternoon.
Radiation Cancer Care Community Applauds Congress for Efforts to Stop Deep Medicare Cuts for Cancer Treatments
October 2, 2012
Triggered by drastic reimbursement cuts proposed by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) for cancer radiation services, over one-quarter (28) of the U.S. Senate and more than 100 bipartisan U.S. Representatives have signed letters sent to Secretary of Health and Human Services, Kathleen Sebelius, expressing serious concern with the $300 million that would be slashed from freestanding radiation oncology practices nationwide.
Real Clear Markets
September 17, 2012
There is no question that the U.S. health care system must be altered so that aggregate spending growth is brought in line with the overall economy, and that will mean major changes. But those needed reforms should be decided by market forces, not Washington.
September 12, 2012
In today's fiscal environment, health care providers are accustomed to reimbursement cuts to a great many services. We don't like them, but we've come to expect them, and we've all learned to do more with less. When policymakers are tasked with encouraging better outcomes and greater efficiency in the system, we expect decision-makers in Washington, D.C., to take well-informed actions based on quality data and in a manner that puts patients first.
August 30, 2012
As a radiation oncologist, I am deeply troubled by the proposed Medicare cuts that could take effect Jan. 1. These payment cuts would drastically reduce the amount Medicare pays for certain cancer treatments — by up to 40 percent. My patients depend on these vital treatments and these cuts would be devastating to my practice and my patients.
North County Times
August 29, 2012
Who would have thought there would be a time when just about every one of us knows someone with cancer? Years ago, a cancer diagnosis was the equivalent of a death sentence but today, tools such as chemotherapy, radiation, and supportive therapies have drastically improved outcomes for common malignancies. Strides in technology and other scientific breakthroughs have transformed cancer care and extended lives.
August 28, 2012
A central tenet in medicine is “first, do no harm.” As a radiation oncologist in South Jersey, this principle guides me in the care I provide to cancer patients each and every day.
August 27, 2012
Nationwide, physicians who provide care to Medicare patients are feeling the impact of significant reimbursement cuts for their services. Radiation oncology practices like mine are no different.
The Baltimore Sun
August 17, 2012
Recently, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) proposed a change to the way free standing radiation oncology practices are reimbursed for their services. The end result is a $300 million cut to cancer care, which will have unfortunate consequences for patients who require radiation treatment. Most patients with cancer require radiation treatments in the course of their care.
Burlington County Times
August 17, 2012
As a radiation oncologist in Burlington County, I wanted to share an issue that could affect the cancer treatment of a great many of our friends and neighbors.
Blue Ridge Now
August 16, 2012
Cutbacks in federal Medicaid and Medicare reimbursements to medical facilities will make it more difficult for patients to access quality care as physicians and medical centers deal with less up-to-date equipment and higher costs, Sen. Richard Burr said Thursday.
Casa Grande Dispatch
August 8, 2012
As a radiation oncologist providing care to cancer patients here in Casa Grande for the last 11 years, I wanted to share an issue that could affect the cancer treatment of a great many of our friends and neighbors.