Marshall Applauds CMS on Final Decision on Covering New Cancer Therapy

August 8, 2019
Press Release

Representative Roger Marshall, M.D. (R-KS) today released a statement applauding the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) on their commitment to providing access to innovative new cancer therapy. CMS strengthened the Medicare program by finalizing its National Coverage Determination (NCD) for Chimeric Antigen Receptor (CAR) T-cell therapies. 

CAR T-cell therapy works by engineering a patients’ immune cells to recognize and fight off life-threatening cancer cells. These therapies are the first of their kind and have only recently been approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

“The final NCD shows Medicare’s continued commitment to America’s seniors by providing access to new lifesaving treatments,” Dr. Marshall said. “There is significant promise for patients sufferings from cancer as next generation therapies make their way to the market. Through the collaborative efforts of CMS and other agencies at the Department of Health and Human Services, the process of harnessing a patient’s own immune cells to treat cancer will only become more effective.”

In May, Representatives Marshall, DelBene (D-WA), Bucshon, M.D. (R-IN), and O’Halleran (D-AZ) led a bipartisan letter in response to CMS’ initial proposal for covering CAR T-cell therapy. Specifically, they asked the agency to utilize existing patient reported outcomes, establish eligibility criteria to be consistent with current guidelines, and to ensure that approved settings of care meet specific regulatory requirements. After reviewing the letter and meeting with Members of Congress, CMS adopted the changes requested.

“I am thankful Administrator Verma and her team took our comments into consideration when developing the final NCD and I appreciate her level of engagement in working with me and my colleagues,” Dr. Marshall said. “Administrator Verma’s efforts on CAR T-cell therapy is commendable. I applaud her leadership on improving the NCD and look forward to continuing to work with her and her team.”

To see Dr. Marshall’s earlier efforts on this issue, please click here.

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