Update on Hematologic Drug Shortages
ASH Submits Comments to the Senate on Draft Prescription Drug Shortage Legislation; Supports Early Notification System
ASH submitted comments to the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) on draft legislation concerning prescription drug shortages. The draft bill is similar to other Congressional legislation ASH has endorsed and would create a mandatory "early warning system" that requires manufacturers to provide early notification to FDA of a discontinuance or "meaningful disruption" of drugs which are life-supporting, life-sustaining or used in the prevention of a debilitating disease or condition. ASH offered a number of recommendations to strengthen the legislation. Read more about ASH's comments and information about the status of additional hematologic drug shortages, ASH advocacy efforts, and resources for physicians dealing with shortages.
Important Information Regarding Doxil Shortage
The FDA and Sun Pharma Global's/Caraco Pharmaceutical Laboratories Ltd. are continuing to temporarily import Lipodox™ into the United States in an effort to manage the ongoing critical shortage of Doxil (doxorubicin hydrochloride liposome injection). In response to this importation, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services' (CMS) Healthcare Common Procedure Coding System (HCPCS) Quarterly Update includes two new codes (Q2048 and Q2049) for liposomal doxorubicin that will become effective July 1, 2012. The code descriptors are worded in a manner that distinguishes Lipodox and Doxil. As of July 1, 2012, HCPCS code J9001 will not be used for Medicare billing. CMS will release a Change Request (CR) with additional instructions in the near future. Read more.
News from CMS
CMS Announces Modifications to HCPCS Code Set
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has announced the scheduled release of modifications to the Healthcare Common Procedure Coding System (HCPCS) code set. These changes have been posted to the HCPCS website.
In response to shortage of liposomal doxorubicin (Doxil), the Food and Drug Administration is permitting the temporary importation of Lipodox, a brand of liposomal doxorubicin hydrochloride. The CMS HCPCS Quarterly Update includes two new codes (Q2048 and Q2049) for liposomal doxorubicin that will become effective on Sunday, July 1. The code descriptors are worded in a manner that distinguishes Lipodox and Doxil. As of Sunday, July 1, HCPCS code J9001 will not be used for Medicare billing. CMS will release a Change Request (CR) with additional instructions in the near future.
CMS Delays ICD-10 Implementation
CMS issued a rule delaying the implementation of ICD-10 for one year, after providers raised concerns about meeting the October 1, 2013, compliance date, for using the new diagnostic codes. The proposed rule also makes other changes under the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) that the agency estimates will save up to $4.6 billion over 10 years.
CMS Announces First Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs) Under the Medicare Shared Savings Program Announced
CMS announced the selection of the first 27 Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs) to participate in the Medicare Shared Saving Program. Read more.
CMS to Host National Provider Call on PQRS and eRx Incentive Program 10-Month Feedback Report on April 17
CMS will host a national provider call on the Physician Quality Reporting System (PQRS) and the Electronic Prescribing (eRx) Incentive Program on Tuesday, April 17, from 1:30 – 3:00 p.m. ET. Subject matter experts will provide an overview of the Electronic Prescribing 10-Month Feedback Report. A question and answer session will follow the presentation. Registration is required to participate.
CMS Reports Results of 2010 Medicare PQRS and eRx Incentive Program
Results of the 2010 Physician Quality Reporting System and the 2010 Electronic Prescribing (eRx) Incentive Program show significant gains in participation and incentives paid to eligible health care professionals. The report, 2010 Physician Quality Reporting System and eRx Experience Report, identifies key areas in which physician-level quality measures point toward future measurable results in improved quality of care delivered to Medicare beneficiaries. Read more.
CMS Issues Update on eRx Payment Adjustment
CMS has developed information to clarify some of the issues brought up by the physician and other health-care professional community regarding the Medicare Electronic Prescribing (eRx) Incentive Program and the 2012 eRx payment adjustment. Read more.
News from ASH
Register for ASH's April Webinar on Plasma Cell Malignancies
Registration is open for the ASH Webinar on Plasma Cell Malignancies, scheduled for April 23 at 8:00 p.m. ET. This webinar will provide a brief overview of the initial diagnosis and management of plasma cell malignancies. Aimed at the practicing hematologist, this program will emphasize the recognition of the possible complications of monoclonal gammopathies, appropriate diagnostic testing and monitoring over time, and the general approach to treatment. Given the emphasis on syndrome identification and initial testing, the discussion will also be relevant to internists, hospitalists, and general practitioners. For more information about this and other ASH webinars, visit www.hematology.org/webinars.
Earn CME Credits from Blood
ASH, in partnership with Medscape, provides monthly opportunities to earn Continuing Medical Education (CME) credits by completing an Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) accredited activity in Blood. This month's activity is titled "The Characteristics and Outcomes of Parainfluenza Virus Infections in 200 Patients with Leukemia or Recipients of Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplantation."
Take Advantage of ASH's Consult a Colleague Service
Consult a Colleague is a service for ASH members that helps facilitate the exchange of information between hematologists and their peers. The full list of available categories is below:
- Hematopoietic Cell Transplantation
- Lymphoproliferative Disorders
- Multiple Myeloma & Waldenström's Macroglobulinemia
- Myeloproliferative Disorders
- Myelodysplastic Syndromes
To learn more or to submit a request, visit www.hematology.org/consult. Assigned Colleagues will respond to inquiries within two business days either by email or phone.
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