FOR INFORMATION CONTACT:
Lori Gardner, Senior Director
Communications & Marketing
301.984.9496 ext. 226
For Immediate Release: April 29, 2005
Most Physicians Not Likely to Participate in Competitive Acquisition Program, According to Association of Community Cancer Centers’ Online Survey
ROCKVILLE, Md.—The Association of Community Cancer Centers (ACCC) recently surveyed physician practice members on their level of interest in participating in the Competitive Acquisition Program (CAP). Generally, most respondents do not appear willing to participate in the CAP. Not surprising, respondents are more likely to work through a CAP vendor if a practice cannot obtain drugs for less than average sales price (ASP) plus 6 percent.
Beginning on January 1, 2006, physicians in private practice will have the choice of directly purchasing drugs and being paid based on the ASP methodology or electing to obtain drugs through a CAP vendor instead. Overwhelmingly, respondents—regardless of specific practice demographics—tend to view CAP as administratively burdensome and resource intensive.
"As proposed in the draft rule, the CAP is not going to work until the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services recognizes the extensive administrative resources that physicians electing the CAP will incur," said Deborah Walter, ACCC Senior Director, Policy and Government Affairs. In fact, physicians who responded to the survey identified the perceived administrative burden as the principal issue affecting their decision not to participate. Ms. Walter added, "The failure to address the administrative burden and additional resources that the program may require could discourage participation in the CAP and undercut the enhanced access to cancer drugs that might otherwise be obtainable through the CAP."
Also problematic is the perception by respondents to maintain separate inventories—which most practices do not find feasible given space limitations. These shortcomings seem to outweigh any benefits that the program offers.
"This administrative obligation does not exist under the average sales price-based reimbursement system and could impose substantial costs on participating physicians,” said Thomas A. Marsland, MD, an oncologist with Florida Oncology Associates in Orange Park, Fla. "While it is not uncommon for physicians to create separate inventories for research drugs as part of a research contract," added Dr. Marsland, “the notable difference is that physicians are compensated."