California Oncology Weekly
"Where California Oncologists Go For Answers!"
A collaborative publication of the
Medical Oncology Association of Southern California, Inc.
and the
Association of Northern California Oncologists, Inc.
June 20, 2017
This Weekly's Hot Topic
  • TOMORROW! June 21, 2017, providers MUST use the most recent version of the ABN (Noridian News)
  • Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC) released its June 2017 Report to Congress (National News)
  • CMS will pay you for your input! CMS wants to improve its Quality Payment Program (QPP) website( News)

California News 
The California Medical Association has updated its Health Law Library with 2017 content, including a MACRA Overview and California's Prescription Drug Monitoring Program. CMA members can access On-Call documents free at;  non-members can purchase On-Call documents for $2 per page.

- Forthcoming California Medical Association webinars include: 
* Transitioning your Practice: Retiring, Selling, or Buying a Practice (June 28)
Contact CMA's member help center at (800) 786-4262 or  for more information. Register on line at .

Noridian News  
TOMORROW! June 21, 2017, providers MUST use the most recent version of the Advance Beneficiary Notice of Noncoverage (ABN) Form CMS-R-131 with the March 2020 expiration date. If the new form is not used on or after this date, any new ABN executed on the old form will be considered invalid and would result in provider liability if Medicare denies the claim. For more information please go to .
Noridian/JEMAC has posted the following updates to its website :
* MLN Connects Provider News
Announcements --MIPS Group Reporting: Registration Period Ends June 30; MIPS Performance Categories: Accepting Future Measures and Activities until June 30; Chronic Care Management Services: New Connected Care Materials; 
Claims, Pricers, and Codes--2018 ICD-10-CM Code Files Available
* Diagnostic and Therapeutic Colonoscopy Final LCD-Effective July 17, 2017
* ASC Payment System-July 2017 Update-Revised CR10138
* ICD-10 Coding Revisions to NCDs CR10086
* Radiopharmaceutical Fee Schedule 2017 Updates
* Screening for Lung Cancer with LDCT-Second Revision CR9246.

  MOASC News

MOASC'S LunchTime Series webinar presentation is on Wednesday, June 28, 2017 at 12:30pm Pacific time. In preparing your practice for MACRA, OCM and the push for patient satisfaction and efficiencies through automation, Alison Twite,Senior Patient Engagement Specialist, Outcome Health, will share a few free technologies available to MOASC member practices that they can employ to assist in this arena. Such as:
The Digital Waiting Room Screen   engages patients and caregivers as they wait to see their provider. Dynamic specialty-specific content motivates and educates them on how to better manage their health;
The Infusion Room Tablet  provides a supportive experience for patients while they receive infusion treatment. With interactive access to entertainment and information on treatment and condition management, the Infusion Room Tablet can help create a more comfortable environment for the patient;
The Exam Room Tablet  brings individuals in the consultation room personalized information in the critical moments before they speak to their provider. The interactive platform delivers practice information, condition & treatment options and health assessments that empowers them to take ownership of their health;
The Digital Anatomy Board   delivers intelligence to the consultation so that providers can better communicate conditions and treatment options. With access to targeted condition and treatment information, including interactive anatomical renderings, physicians, patients and caregivers are empowered to make better health decisions together.
Outcome Health is a patient engagement company, striving to improve the patient experience at the point of care through their free patient-facing technologies.
Please RSVP to or call 909-985-9061 ext. 1 to register.
SAVE-THE-DATE, for MOASC's  3rd Annual Spotlight on ASCO presentation by the University of California Irvine, Saturday, July 29  at the Waterfront Beach Resort, Huntington Beach. MOASC awarded educational grants to 3 UCI Fellows to attend ASCO and present their discoveries. Faculty from UCI will round out the discussions on: ASCO Abstract Highlights, Colorectal & Gastro-Esophageal cancer, Breast cancer and Lung cancer.
Renew your MOASC Membership TODAY! Continue your investment in your association.  We truly appreciate your devotion to serving the California oncology community! In an uncertain economy combined with the rapid changes to healthcare and its delivery, you are required to stay one-step ahead and keep informed. In order to achieve success, you need the right tools and resources; MOASC is the association that can bring those tools to you and your practice.  You have read, in this publication, of MOASC's successful collaborative efforts in Sacramento and Washington DC. 
Renew   your membership in two ways:
1.      Print the application  HERE Mail application with your check to:   Medical Oncology Association of Southern California , P.O. Box 161, Upland, CA  91785
2.       Go to   and pay via PayPal.

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ANCO News  
ANCO's ASCO Highlights 2017 will not take place in 2017 in lieu of our encouragement of members to attend ASCO's Best of ASCO in San Francisco (; June 16-17). ANCO hosted an event on June 15 entitled The State of Cancer Care with Wes Kidder, M.D., and Margaret Tempero, M.D., University of California, San Francisco, at the San Francisco Marriott Marquis.  Download their presentation at meeting announcement/registration form at

- SAVE THE DATE--ANCO's 2017 Professional Education Meeting will take place on September 6 at the San Jose Fairmont and feature talks on QPP/MACRA, ASCO's COME HOME Project, USP 797/800, and California Legislative/Regulatory Updates. Watch for a meeting announcement in early July.

National  News
Last week the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC) released its June 2017 Report to Congress, issuing several major recommendations related to Medicare Part B drug payments.  MedPAC's recommendations include a reduction in Wholesale Acquisition Cost (WAC)-based payments and a reduction in the average sales price (ASP) add-on payment. Medicare also would develop a program that would allow providers to use private Pharmacy Benefit Manager (PBM)-style vendors to negotiate drug prices with manufacturers. 
Senior Trump administration officials are preparing an executive order aimed at lowering drug costs. One policy under consideration is value-based purchasing.
The Supreme Court ruled to cut the time it takes for copycat versions of biologic drugs to enter the market, a blow to brand-name drug makers seeking to avoid cheaper versions of their products from entering the market.
Health care experts say Incis poised to disrupt the medical supplies industry as it builds out its Amazon Business platform.

CMS News

The CMS Region IX's Division of Financial Management & Fee for Service Operations will be hosting a webinar for Region IX's medical societies and associations on Monday, June 26, 2017, from 1:00 pm until 2:00 pm Pacific Time. The purpose of the call will be to provide an update on CMS' initiatives, such as: Durable Medical Equipment (DME) Prior Authorization; Preparing for the Quality Payment Program (QPP); and other Updates.
The final agenda will be sent prior to the call.
Access Information:
1. Call: 1-877-267-1577. WebEx Meeting Number is: 997 678 532
2. To join this meeting online go to: 
This meeting does not require a password.
If you have any questions, please contact Neal Logue with CMS at (415) 744-3551 or at .  Thank you.
CMS will pay you for your input! CMS wants to improve its  Quality Payment Program (QPP) website( and make it more useful by creating a streamlined system for CMS staff to manage information for physicians and their practices. As part of that effort, the agency is offering to pay for feedback from those who use the site and are affected by CMS programs. Specifically, the agency is looking for physicians and other health care professionals who review Medicare feedback reports, as well as administrative staff and office managers who interact with Medicare and perform tasks associated with Medicare quality data submission.
Selected participants will earn $150-$200 for taking part in one-hour sessions conducted via conference call or an online meeting platform.
This QPP research project requires that participants: work in a small or medium-sized medical practice with 15 or fewer health care professionals; be part of a practice that aims to participate in the QPP program for 2017; and are familiar with Medicare feedback reports (previously called Quality and Resource Use Reports, or QRURs) or intend to review QPP feedback.
Send an email to CMS and include the subject line: "Participation for QPP Feedback Report Research." A staff person from the CMS-authorized contractor CommunicateHealth will respond to the email. Interested parties may be contacted during the next few months to participate in feedback sessions.
In  a notice posted Friday, the CMS estimates that only 16 virtual groups made up of 765 clinicians will launch by Jan.1, 2018 to comply with the merit-based incentive payment system (MIPS) under MACRA, which is the first year virtual groups are allowed to operate.  In comparison, up to 418,000 physicians will be submitting 2017 MIPS data to the CMS. To avoid penalties outlined by the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act, physicians must participate in either a merit-based incentive payment system (MIPS) or one of several advanced alternative payment models.
Solo and small practices can create "virtual groups" that would be evaluated under MIPS as one large entity. It can take up to three months to complete a virtual group agreement among partners clinicians told CMS. The majority of stakeholders also indicated they may need at least six months prior to the start of the 2018 MIPS performance period to prepare IT and train staff by January 1, 2018.
Industry stakeholders are surprised by the low interest since there initially was buzz among clinicians to create such groups, but say it makes sense given that the CMS has yet to release a rule about how exactly virtual groups will work and what standards providers would have to meet. Read More

Affiliate Association News 

- Earlier this year, COA submitted formal comments on the draft recommendations to MedPAC.
 In the letter, COA expressed its deep concern that the proposal completely ignores the realities of the American cancer care delivery system.  If implemented, COA believes that these recommendations will backfire, causing the opposite of their intent, driving more cancer care into the much more expensive hospital setting and accelerating increases in Part B costs for Medicare and beneficiaries. Click here to read COA's comments on the MedPAC proposal
ASCO joined nearly 270 patient and provider groups in signing a letter to the United States Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Tom Price, urging the agency to formally withdraw the Obama Administration's proposed Medicare Part B Drug Payment Model. Go to  for more information.
ASH has unveiled their new MACRA webpage at dedicated to keeping members up-to-date on the Quality Payment Program (QPP). 
NCCN has published updates to the NCCN Clinical Practice Guidelines in Oncology (NCCN GuidelinesĀ®),, for: acute myeloid leukemia (V3.2017); B-cell lymphomas (V3.2017); colon cancer (V1.2017); hepatocellular carcinoma and gall bladder cancer (V2.2017); neuroendocrine tumors (V3.2017); non-small cell lung cancer (V6.2017); prostate cancer early detection (V1.2017); soft tissue sarcoma (V2.2017); thyroid carcinoma (V2.2017). For the complete updated versions of the NCCN Guidelines,, please visit .

Industry News 
Merck informs ANCO and MOASC that the United States Food and Drug Administration has approved Keytruda for the treatment of adult and pediatric patients with unresectable or metastatic, micro satellite instability-high or mismatch repair deficient, solid tumors that have progressed following prior treatment and who have no satisfactory alternative treatment options or colorectal cancer that has progressed following treatment with fluoropyrimidine, oxaliplatin, and irinotecan.
Novartis Oncology informs ANCO and MOASC that the United States Food and Drug Administration has approved the expanded use of Zykadia to include the first-line treatment of patients with metastatic non-small cell lung cancer whose tumors are anapestic lymphoma kinase (ALK)-positive, as detected by an FDA-approved test.

In This Issue

ASCO National Meeting in Chicago
June 2-6, 2017
LunchTime Series 
June 28, 2017
Spotlight on ASCO
July 29, 2017
(ANCO Member Discount Code IBW17ANCO, San Diego, July 14-15)

(ANCO Member Discount Code ILC17ANCO,
 Huntington Beach, July 27-29) 

ANCO 2017 Professional Education Meeting
(San Jose, September 6) 

12th Annual Congress: Hematologic Malignancies (NCCN, San Francisco, October 6-7)

The  Medical Oncology Association of Southern California (MOASC) is a leading oncology society that advances and protects the ability of cancer patients to obtain, and the ability of the oncology physicians to provide, optimal cancer care. The  Association of Northern California Oncologists (ANCO) is an association of hematologists/oncologists dedicated to promoting high professional standards of cancer care by providing a forum for the exchange of ideas, data, and knowledge. The material contained in the California Oncology Weekly is intended as general information for ANCO and MOASC members. Because diagnostic, treatment, contracting, coding, and billing decisions should be made on a case-by-case basis, any such information contained in the California Oncology Weekly may not apply in any given situation. Members are encouraged to contact their own consultants or advisors to obtain specific advice on matters relating to contracting, coding, and billing. The information contained in California Oncology Weekly should not be used as a substitute for such advice. This publication provides a summary of regulations affecting oncology and its business practices. Reading this newsletter does not substitute for understanding regulations and verifying the validity of every claim. This information is time-sensitive and is subject to change. MOASC or ANCO accepts no liability for any statements or articles herein. CPT codes are owned and trademarked by the American Medical Association.  All Rights Reserved.



MOASC: P.O. Box 161, Upland, CA 91785 | P (909) 985-9061 | F (909) 804-5006|

ANCO: P.O. Box 151109, San Rafael, CA 94915 |  P (415) 472-3960 | F (415) 472-3961 |