"Where California Oncologists Go For Answers!"
A collaborative publication of the
Medical Oncology Association of Southern California, Inc.
Association of Northern California Oncologists, Inc
This Weekly's Hot Topics
- Tomorrow! Attend reception for MICRA advocate Assm. Smith. California News
- Amazon to contract with City of Hope for cancer support services. California News
- Key healthcare analytics trends for 2019. National New
- The Coalition to Protect MICRA (CAPP) invites you to join them for an evening reception in honor of Assembly Member Christy Smith on Wednesday, October 23, from 5:30 PM to 6:30 PM. The reception will be held at Oakmont of Valencia (24070 Copper Hill Dr., Valencia, CA 91354). Please click here to view the invitation. If you are not far from Valencia, please share this invitation with your colleagues and staff and encourage them to attend. Please RSVP to Kristina Gelaber firstname.lastname@example.org. Thank you for your continued support of CAPP.
- The 148th Annual Session of the California Medical Association (CMA) House of Delegates (HOD) will convene October 26-27, 2019, at the Disneyland Hotel, Anaheim. HOD establishes broad policy on current major issues that have been determined by the Committee of Delegation Chairs, Speakers and the CMA Board of Trustees to be the most important issues affecting members, the Association and the practice of medicine. Early testimony, feedback and suggested amendments were reviewed to create the revised versions of the reports. The revised reports will be the official business of the House during Annual Session.
Revised Major Issues Reports are now available on the HOD website.
- The following California bills have been signed by the Governor:
* SB600 will require all health plans to cover fertility preservation services patients about to undergo cancer treatment that may impact their fertility.
*AB744 will require all health insurers to cover services provided via telehealth in the same way they would an in-person encounter. Learn more at https://www.cmadocs.org/newsroom/news/view/ArticleId/28182/Governor-signs-CMA-bill-to-require-insurers-to-pay-for-telehealth-services.
- The deadline for the California Colorectal Cancer Coalition (C4) Community Grants, Request for Applications is December 6, 2019. C4 is initiating the eight annual community collaborative grant process for fiscal year 2020. Applicant organizations are encouraged to apply for grants that are in alignment with C4's mission to fulfill their mission by: implementing strategies to reduce disparities in CRC screening, diagnosis and treatment among underserved populations in California; increasing capacity for colorectal cancer screening; and advocating for CRC screenings to serve uninsured and underinsured populations. C4 has moved to a fully integrated online electronic submission process for the 2020 Community Grants program. C4 is seeking applications from organizations within California that promote the mission of improving the outcomes related to colorectal cancer in Californians. You can find more information by visiting the C4 website at https://www.cacoloncancer.org/. Click here to access the RFA. A webinar on the application process and Q&A session will be held on November 5 at 1 pm (PST). Direct URL for application
- Come Jan. 1, 2020, California will be the first state to offer financial aid to middle-class people who make too much money to qualify for federal Affordable Care Act tax credits. Californians will once again owe a penalty if they are uninsured.
- Amazon is the latest employer to contract with MOASC member, City of Hope, to offer its workers an array of cancer support services. The partnership allows Amazon employees to request a review of their diagnosis and treatment plan from City of Hope specialists, who may recommend improvements to the plan if appropriate. Amazon employees may also travel to City of Hope for an in-person evaluation.
- Noridian/JEMAC has the following updates on their website
New Medicare Card: MBI Transition Ends in Less Than 10 Weeks; ICD-10 Coordination and Maintenance: Deadline for Comments November 8; Quality Payment Program: Participation Status Tool Includes Second Snapshot of Data
Quality Payment Program: MIPS and APM Resources; Hospice Payment System-Reminder; Hospital Outpatient Prospective Payment System-Reminder; Telehealth Services-Reminder
* Chemotherapy Administration-R21
Forthcoming Noridian JEMAC meetings/webinars/workshops
* What's New in the Fourth Quarter 2019-After Hours Webinar (October 24)
* Open Enrollment Webinar (November 6)
For more information and to register visit:
Have you received a Comprehensive Error Rate Testing (CERT) audit letter? Timely response is critical to the success of reducing the overall national improper payment rate.
Read the complete update.
- As a MOASC purchasing member, you pay no registration fee for the 2019 Innovatix + Essensa National Meeting & Expo in Atlanta on October 28-30. There is still time to register for this annual event providing three highly anticipated days of learning, networking, and business development. Make sure you don't miss out on this exclusive opportunity,
REGISTER TODAY. Please review the National Meeting web page for additional details and register to attend today before space or time runs out! REGISTER TODAY
Are you prepared for the next disaster?
through its Oncology Patient Emergency Network (OPEN) is pleased to be working with Direct Relief, a nonprofit humanitarian medical aid organization that works to bridge the gap between providers treating vulnerable patients and healthcare manufacturers.
As a licensed wholesale distributor, donations of medications and medical supplies from Direct Relief are made available in two ways; either for ongoing support of providers treating underserved patients, or to equip and strengthen providers affected by emergencies. If you are interested in learning more, please visit www.directrelief.org/emergency/
For more information or to join the Oncology Patient Emergency Network (OPEN), please visit www.open-central.com
- Plan to attend the "MOASC Educational Series Program," November 14, 2019. The day will present: Bobbi Buell bringing the MOST UP-TO-DATE billing changes from across the board with southern California benchmarks and specific California healthplan issues;
from Noridian, addressing specific Medicare changes; Dawn Holcombe presenting current USP800 (eff. 12/1/19) and USP797 news and further actions; Arthur Lurvey, MD, FACP, FACE, California Medicare Contractor, Noridian, Medical Director, speaking on new E&M codes for physicians' awareness coming in 2021; and Remedios Turner, from Medi-Cal, reviewing state initiatives of coverage. Presenters will also address new imaging rules; payment changes; classification of physician relationship to patient; off-label coverage, and more. Please RSVP no later than November 1, 2019 to
- MOASC members can register for the 61st ASH Annual Meeting and Exposition in Orlando, December 7-10, 2019,
using your ASH username
email@example.com and password. If someone else is registering for you, please provide them with your credentials to avoid delays. If you have forgotten your credentials, you may reset them on the ASH website using the "Forgot your Username or Password" links.
- The MOASC Oncology Summit, Saturday, March 14, 2020 at the Hyatt Regency Huntington Beach. The MOASC Oncology Summit continues to highlight cutting-edge topics presented by world-renowned physicians. You will not want to miss our 2020 program!
ANCO has Moved!
Please note we have moved our offices. Our new mailing address is:
Post Office Box 2954,
Alameda, CA 94501. The ANCO telephone number remains the same--
415-472-3960 (Office); our e-mail addresses are
also note the ANCO's FAX number has been disabled.
- Follow ANCO on Twitter at
- In 2019, healthcare analytics will continue to play a central role in driving innovation and value for providers, physicians, and patients.
Read this whitepaper to learn more about the key healthcare analytics trends we see for 2019:
* Actionable analytics put data in context
* Data storytelling is the new language of business
* Enterprises get smarter about analytics adoption
* Governed data curation bridges the gap between data and business GET THE TRENDS
- A new data file added to AHRQ's (
Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality)
Compendium of U.S. Health Systems identifies 36,303 physician group practices and allows researchers, policymakers and others to assess how the practices are organized and owned according to the nation's 626 health systems. The group practice data are publicly available so users can identify practices within health systems and then, linking to additional data sources, explore characteristics of the systems and their group practices, such as cost and quality of care. The compendium was developed by AHRQ's Comparative Health System Performance Initiative, which studies how healthcare delivery systems promote evidence-based practices and patient-centered outcomes research in delivering care.
- A critical drug that serves as the backbone of treatment for most childhood cancers, including leukemias, lymphomas and brain tumors, has become increasingly scarce, and doctors are warning that they may soon be forced to consider rationing doses. Persistent shortages of certain drugs and medical supplies have plagued the United States for years, but physicians say the loss of this medication, vincristine, is uniquely problematic, as there is no appropriate substitute.
- Cancer survivors who said they had trouble understanding health insurance or medical bills related to their treatment were more likely than those who understood their bills to say they worried about or had trouble paying medical bills, or had delayed or forgone care because of the cost, researchers reported in JNCI Cancer Spectrum. "Interventions such as financial and health insurance navigation, decision aids, and more user-friendly and easier-to-read medical bills, which improve patients' understanding of health insurance and medical costs, could potentially be applied to improve health insurance literacy and benefit cancer survivors," researchers said in a news release.
United Press International
- Chubb's latest Cyber InFocus Report says the total of ransomware incidents in 2019 is surpassing the number of such attacks in 2018. The increase is occurring as ransomware attacks become more sophisticated, Chubb says.
Insurance Business America
- Physicians have until December 31, 2019 to review and dispute their 2018 open payments data reported by CMS earlier this year. To learn more and review your data go to
- The 2019 MIPS performance year is in its final months and there are important steps participants can take to ensure successful data reporting. For participants utilizing EHR vendors to submit MIPS data, make time to check-in with those vendors to ensure they are on track to submit data during the submission period early next year. Dec. 31 is the last day MIPS participants can apply for a Promoting Interoperability hardship exception and an extreme and uncontrollable circumstances application. Those that qualify will receive re-weighting of one or more MIPS performance categories.
- Starting January 1, 2020, all providers must use the MBI when billing Medicare regardless of the date of service. The MBI replaces the SSN-based HICN.
CMS will reject claims submitted with Health Insurance Claim Numbers (HICNs) with a few
CMS will reject all eligibility transactions submitted with HICNs
CMS is reminding all providers to use the Medicare Beneficiary Identifier (MBI) for your patients when you are billing Medicare. . All new Medicare cards include the MBI.
Ask your patients for their cards. If they did not get a new card, give them the Get Your New Medicare Card flyer in
Use your Medicare Administrative Contractor's look-up tool.
or the Portal to use the tool. Check the remittance advice. We return the MBI on the remittance advice for every claim with a valid and active HICN.
For more information, see the MLN Matters Article.
- A survey found 86% of physician practices said their overall regulatory burden has increased over the past year and 96% said reducing those requirements would allow them to put more resources back into patient care. The survey, released at the MGMA annual meeting, showed 83% of practices said prior authorization was either very or extremely burdensome.
As reported in the California Oncology Weekly, President Trump announced an
Executive Order charging CMS to propose annual changes to combat waste, fraud, and abuse in the Medicare program. Yesterday, October 21, Seema Verma, Administrator, Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services announced CMS' vision to modernize the program integrity methods to better protect taxpayers from fraud, waste and abuse in Medicare. One area of focus is to r
educe provider burden
. CMS has increased efforts to educate providers in CMS program rules and regulations and remedy onerous processes to assist rather than punish providers who make good faith claim errors. That is the purpose of CMS' Targeted Probe and Educate (TPE) program and efforts to streamline the recovery audit processes. These programs are one of several factors that led to more than a 10% decrease in the number of claims appeals. Fewer appeals mean providers are being paid what they expected, lowering Medicare's administrative costs from resolving appeals.
The TPE program has also highlighted provider burden and confusing policies. CMS is collaborating with ongoing industry efforts to streamline workflow access to coverage requirements, starting with developing a prototype Medicare FFS
Documentation Requirement Lookup Service. This initiative will allow providers to discover Medicare FFS prior authorization and documentation requirements at the time of service and within their EHR. These initiatives are a few of many projects CMS has to reduce provider burden.
- Chubb's latest Cyber InFocus Report says the total of ransomware incidents in 2019 is surpassing the number of such attacks in 2018. The increase is occurring as ransomware attacks become more sophisticated, Chubb says. Insurance Business America
Affiliate Association News
- Register TODAY, October 22, for The Alliance to Advance Patient-Centered Cancer Care's free webinar, Securing Strategic Partnerships That Improve Access to Cancer Care, featuring The Ohio State University James Comprehensive Cancer Center and the Georgia Cancer Center for Excellence at Grady Health System. These organizations will share their creative solutions to improve patient-centered cancer care. This webinar takes place on October 24, 2019 from 11am to 12 p.m. (PT). Refer to the AAPCCC website for questions about the webinar.
- Join Targeted Oncology™for a sit-down discussion as experts discuss pathology report findings, patient diagnostic workup, the most likely diagnosis and potential treatment options across multiple cases in a given therapeutic area. A Roundtable Discussion on NSCLC Thursday, October 24, 2019 | 7 PM. Key Opinion Leader: Dr. Karen Reckamp (City of Hope Comprehensive Cancer Center) Location: Nick & Stef's Steakhouse (330 Hope St., Los Angeles, CA 90071) RSVP at www.targetedonc.com/events
- This Saturday! Join the Inland Empire Oncology Nursing Society fundraiser event for The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society's Light The Night, on October 26, 2019 at the Auto Club Speedway of California in Fontana, money raised through Light The Night allows The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS) to fund treatments for patients who are suffering from all forms of blood cancers. In 2018, LLS helped advance 19 of 21 approved blood cancer therapies. Beating cancer is in our blood.
- October 28-30 is the 2019 Innovatix + Essensa National Meeting & Expo in Atlanta! As a MOASC purchasing member, you pay no registration fee for the conference or the sessions. There is still time to register for this annual event providing three highly
anticipated days of learning, networking, and business development. Make sure you don't miss out on this exclusive opportunity,
REGISTER TODAY. Please review the National Meeting web page for additional details and register to attend today before space or time runs out! REGISTER TODAY
- The deadline has been extended to October 30 for practices in the
Los Angeles/Long Beach, CA
area to apply to participate in ASCO-Komen Quality Initiative.
ASCO and Susan G. Komen® are partnering to expand ASCO's quality improvement resources to 10 oncology practices in 11 specific urban centers serving high proportions of African American patients with breast cancer. As part of the Komen Foundation's African American Health Equity
Activities will include QOPI®, the Quality Training Program, a Learning Collaborative, and a site assessment and report to improve cancer care delivery. QOPI Certification may also be a potential opportunity within the program. Complete an application today!
- To accommodate the results of high-quality research that was not available by the ASH annual meeting general abstract submission deadline, the late-breaking abstract submission site is NOW OPEN and will close October 30 at 11:59 p.m. Pacific time. Abstracts submitted during this time will undergo regular peer evaluation, and a maximum of six submissions will be accepted for presentation during the Late-Breaking Abstracts session in Orlando on Tuesday, December 10. The accepted abstracts will be published online in the meeting program on November 21 and will be part of Blood's online-only abstracts supplement in late November.
Submit your abstract.
ACCC 36th National Oncology Conference is October 30 - Nov. 1 in Orlando. There's still time to register. From session presenters to Innovator Award winners, featured sessions and networking breaks, you'll find replicable, innovative strategies for the effective delivery of cancer care.
- Research To Practice will hold their First Annual Oncology Nursing Retreat, November 8 - 10, 2019 at the Diplomat Beach Resort Hotel in Hollywood Beach, Florida. This educational meeting will focus on covering a plethora of common solid tumors & hematologic cancers with expertise from a stellar faculty panel of clinical investigators and nurse practitioners (33 in total). There is no fee for oncology nurses to participate.
For more information and to register:
- ASH will host a webinar entitled Leveraging New Technologies: The Ins & Outs of E-Consults and Telemedicine on November 21 at 2PM PT. Registration will open soon; for more information please email Katherine Stark at
- Registration for Round 2 of ASCO's Quality Oncology Practice Initiative is now open, and data submission will run through December 3, 2019. QOPI is an oncologist-led, practice-based quality assessment program for outpatient oncology clinics. Register for QOPI at
- The 61st ASH Annual Meeting and Exposition in Orlando, is December 7-10, 2019. To register, you will need to sign in using your ASH username firstname.lastname@example.org and password. If someone else is registering for you, please provide them with your credentials to avoid delays. If you have forgotten your credentials, you may reset them on the ASH website using the "Forgot your Username or Password" links. Please note that SPARGO, Inc. is the only official housing and registration provider for the 61st ASH Annual Meeting and Exposition. For more information on housing and registration fees, please visit the ASH website. View the preliminary program online.Whether you are unable to attend the ASH annual meeting in December, or just want to learn more about the most notable abstracts and topics presented, you're invited to join your colleagues for an official Highlights of ASH® meeting. In each location, expert hematology faculty will provide analysis of emerging drug therapies, patient treatment strategies, and the clinical and translational research presented in December. The format of this program allows speakers to delve further into topics and provides attendees with more time to ask questions and network with colleagues. An early-bird registration discount is available for the international Highlights meetings - register by November 1 to take advantage! Learn more.
- ASCO has published a new clinical practice guideline entitled Management of Osteoporosis in Survivors of Adult Cancers with Non-metastatic Disease at
- NCCN has published updated guidelines at:
- Stemline Therapeutics, Inc.
has announced that
Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS)
granted permanent J-Code and NTAP for ELZONRIS Injection for IV Use a New Technology Add-On Payment (NTAP) designation for inpatient utilization. Effective October 1, 2019 use J-Code: J9269 Injection, tagraxofusp-erzs, 10 mcg and NTAP designation: XW033Q5 or XW043Q5*. For more information click here.
Coalition to Protect MICRA (CAPP)
Inland Empire Oncology Nursing Society fundraiser for
The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society's Light The Night
Auto Club Speedway of California in Fontana
The 148th Annual Session of the California Medical Association (CMA) House of Delegates
ASCO-Komen Quality Initiative for
Komen Foundation's African American Health Equity Initiative in the Los Angeles/Long Beach
application to participate ends O
(San Francisco, October 25-27)
(Stanford, April 2-3, 2020)
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 MOASC and ANCO 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| www.moasc.org
ANCO: P.O. Box 2954, Alameda, CA 94501 | P (415) 472-3960 | www.anco.org