Medicare Reverses Stance on Reimbursing Hospitals for Amgen’s Costly Cancer Treatment
In a policy reversal, Medicare will now provide hospitals with extra payments for Amgen's costly cancer treatment Blincyto. In a final rule to be published Aug. 17, CMS said Blincyto "represents a substantial clinical improvement over existing treatment options." CMS approved a "new technology add-on payment" for up to $27,000 of Blincyto's cost, depending on how long a patient stays in the hospital. Medicare makes such payments for new treatments whose costs are not yet included in the lump-sum reimbursements that hospitals receive for treating patients with certain diseases.
- "Medicare, Reversing Itself, Will Pay More for an Expensive New Cancer Drug" (Pear, New York Times, 8/8).