par Gus Iversen
, Editor in Chief | March 15, 2021
From the March 2021 issue of HealthCare Business News magazine
HCB News: Are there any resources available to smaller hospitals or regional providers seeking to partner with proton facilities?
We encourage health systems that do not have this technology to partner with proton centers to develop avenues for providing this modality to their patients. There are currently 37 operating proton centers in the United States, and many already have such relationships with other private or academic radiation oncology groups and practices that do not themselves deliver proton therapy.
HCB News: In the past year, has the reimbursement situation changed at all for proton therapy?
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Yes. We have seen several major insurance providers expand the coverage indications for proton therapy in their guidelines, opening up coverage for more patients. But some patients still struggle with a long pre-authorization process that delays treatment, and others continue to receive denials due to a lack of knowledge or update data analyses from commercial insurance providers. Advocating for expanding the access of proton therapy is a driving mission of NAPT.
HCB News: The NAPT is holding its virtual meeting in April. Is there anything at the meeting you're particularly excited about?
We will meet again virtually to allow our healthcare leaders to remain committed to patient care as we share knowledge and ideas together safely during the pandemic. The meeting will include two days of exceptional lectures from many of the leaders in our field. This year, the meeting will also newly feature small group discussion opportunities such as “Meet the Expert” sessions. I am excited about these sessions as they will further ensure that attendees interact with each other, share ideas and knowledge, and listen to presentations. I am also excited to hear from the keynote speaker, Grace Eline, a dynamic young woman who is a cancer survivor and advocate for children with cancer. She and her mother will provide the patient perspective on proton therapy and offer an inspiring session for attendees.
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