Mary K. Caffrey


Initiative Seeks to Advance Molecular Understanding of Pancreatic Cancer

May 7th 2015

A partnership between the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network and Perthera, a self-described "concierge" for molecular diagnostic testing, is aiming to give patients with this hard-to-treat cancer the ability to determine the best course of treatment.

Study Suggests Lung Cancer Screening Criteria May Not Capture All Smokers Who Need It

March 31st 2015

Eligibility criteria set by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services for coverage of low-dose computed tomography for individuals deemed at high risk for lung cancer may actually exclude many potential lung cancer patients who would benefit from screening.

House, Senate Introduce Bill to Replace SGR

March 19th 2015

Leaders in Congress today reached a bipartisan, bicameral deal to permanently repeal and replace Medicare's sustainable growth-rate formula for paying physicians.

Medicare Will Cover LDCT Screening for High-Risk Individuals

February 6th 2015

Medicare will immediately cover lung cancer screening with low-dose computed tomography for high-risk individuals, including current and former smokers.

Multiple Myeloma Advances: Noted Hematologist Envisions Big Changes in Treatment Paradigms

January 20th 2015

Clinicians who treat patients with multiple myeloma have witnessed a sea change in the past 15 years. Yet another revolution appears right around the corner.

Medicare Reimburses 3 Prostate Cancer Diagnostic Tests

January 4th 2015

After months of delay, the Medicare Administrative Contractor (MAC), with jurisdiction over most molecular diagnostic tests used to treat cancer, made a series of decisions this fall that will allow Medicare reimbursement for several well-known tests, including 3 used in the treatment of prostate cancer.

"Perverse Incentives" Add Costs to Dying Patients

December 29th 2014

Sweeping changes to the way America delivers care at the end of life would better serve patients and their families, while achieving the goals sought in the Affordable Care Act (ACA) of better health, cost savings, and especially patient satisfaction

When Science Outpaces Payers: Molecular Diagnostics Pose Reimbursement Dilemmas

September 17th 2014

As precision medicine continues to evolve in cancer care, the development of highly sophisticated tests that leverage the explosion of knowledge about the molecular and protein characteristics of an individual patient's tumor has emerged as its own scientific frontier.

50th Anniversary Report: Even More Known About Smoking, Cancer Connections

June 24th 2014

A recent report on the health consequences of smoking pored through the most recent data and several new findings about smoking and cancer.

FDA Tells Direct-to-Consumer Genetic Testing Company to Halt Marketing

March 12th 2014

Federal regulators have ordered the direct-to-consumer genetic testing company 23andMe to stop marketing its saliva-based test without necessary approvals as a medical device

Medicaid Expansion Plans Provide Novel Approaches for Healthcare Coverage

December 23rd 2013

The US Supreme Court's decision to uphold the Affordable Care Act but allow states to decide whether to expand Medicaid has raised a question in many states: Where political leaders have been opposed or split on President Obama's healthcare reforms, is it smart or foolish to cover more people?

Fine Print of Budget Deal Doesn't Bode Well for SGR Overhaul

December 19th 2013

The tiny "raise" touted in the latest temporary fix to Medicare's Sustainable Growth Rate, which was wrapped inside the bipartisan budget deal headed to President Obama's desk, is anything but good news for oncologists.

Drug Shortages Persist in Wake of Surveys

November 6th 2013

Headlines from the June meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) in Chicago announced to the general public what oncologists and hematologists have known for more than two years: sporadic shortages of cancer drugs are forcing suboptimal treatment plans for patients, and government efforts have not filled the void.

Leveraging Health Reform to Combat a History of Cancer

October 11th 2013

Governor Steve Beshear did not sugarcoat the data on May 9, 2013, when he said Kentucky would take an offer it couldn't refuse. With his state ranked worst in the nation in smoking and cancer deaths, and not far behind in heart disease, Beshear was "tired of being at the bottom."