Newswise — ARLINGTON, Va., March 1, 2021 – The American Society for Radiation Oncology (ASTRO) today expressed its support for President Joseph R. Biden Jr.’s nomination of Chiquita Brooks-LaSure as administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) and the appointment of Elizabeth Fowler as director of the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation (CMMI). ASTRO Chair Thomas J. Eichler, MD, FASTRO, issued the following statement:
“ASTRO congratulates Chiquita Brooks-LaSure on her nomination to lead the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, and we urge the Senate to swiftly confirm her. We also applaud the selection of Liz Fowler to lead the CMS Innovation Center.
We look forward to working with Ms. Brooks-LaSure, Ms. Fowler and the Biden Administration on a variety of issues, including ways to fix the flawed Radiation Oncology (RO) Model and protect access to high quality radiation oncology care for people with cancer. President Biden is a recognized leader on ways to advance cancer care, and we hope to collaborate with his team to enhance quality and reduce costs for patients."
An ASTRO-led group of 27 stakeholders in radiation oncology also submitted a letter to CMS leadership today that outlined specific recommendations to improve the RO Model. Organizations including the American Medical Association, the Medical Group Management Association, the International Myeloma Foundation and other groups representing radiation oncology team members and industry partners said they "believe the RO Model, with reforms, represents a real opportunity to advance radiation therapy care for cancer patients," but that the model's current design "is overly focused on achieving significant savings, at the risk of hurting access to care and quality."
ASTRO will continue to seek transparency and an open dialogue with the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation (CMMI) in future rulemaking on the model.
More information about the RO Model is available at www.astro.org/APMpress.
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. To learn more about ASTRO, visit our website, sign up to receive our news and follow us on our blog, Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.