ARLINGTON, Va., December 7, 2020 – The American Society for Radiation Oncology (ASTRO) today expressed its support for President-elect Joseph R. Biden Jr.’s nomination of Xavier Becerra as secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). ASTRO Chair Thomas J. Eichler, MD, FASTRO, issued the following statement:

“ASTRO congratulates Xavier Becerra, a champion for health care access for all Americans, on his nomination and we urge the Senate to swiftly confirm him as secretary of health and human services. ASTRO believes Mr. Becerra is highly qualified for this critical position, and we look for him to prioritize science-based approaches in the country’s ongoing fight against COVID-19. We greatly appreciate his past leadership on health care issues during his time in Congress and current tenure as California's attorney general. As ASTRO continues its work to protect access to high quality radiation oncology care for people with cancer and other diseases, we are eager to partner with him to advance radiation oncology care in Medicare, Medicaid and other federal health care programs and agencies, including the National Institutes of Health. In particular, we look forward to urgently working with Mr. Becerra and the HHS team to reexamine and fix the flawed Medicare Radiation Oncology Alternative Payment Model (RO Model) before its scheduled start on July 1, 2021."



The American Society for Radiation Oncology (ASTRO) is the world’s largest radiation oncology society, with more than 10,000 members who are physicians, nurses, biologists, physicists, radiation therapists, dosimetrists and other health care professionals who specialize in treating patients with radiation therapies. The Society is dedicated to improving patient care through professional education and training, support for clinical practice and health policy standards, advancement of science and research, and advocacy. ASTRO publishes three medical journals, International Journal of Radiation Oncology • Biology • Physics, Practical Radiation Oncology and Advances in Radiation Oncology; developed and maintains an extensive patient website, RT Answers; and created the nonprofit foundation Radiation Oncology Institute. To learn more about ASTRO, visit our website, sign up to receive our news and follow us on our blog, Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.