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Oncology Buy-and-Bill Evolving

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| January 22, 2010 |

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DRUG TOPICS – January 2011 Issue

 
Oncology treatment and benefits are changing. Buy-and-bill, the traditional methodology that had physicians buying chemotherapeutic products, treating in the office, and billing the payer, is going the way of surgery by barbers. But no one is quite sure what will replace the one-time standard of payment. 

“We are in the midst of an evolution,” said Burt Zweigenhaft, CEO of OncoMed, an oncology pharmacy based in New York. “Physicians who used to make 30% or 40% on oncology drugs are now making 6%. Payers are squeezing reimbursement to cut costs and looking at standardizing treatment guidelines, as they have done in other areas.”

He added, “One answer is specialty pharmacy. But specialty pharmacy typically has no experience in oncology. Neither do pharmacy benefit managers. Everything you thought you knew about treatment is turned upside down in oncology.”

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