Corporate Compliance

Study: TAP, AZ settlement will cause oncologists to lose income

Compliance Monitor, December 14, 2005

A $1.1 billion Medicare fraud settlement with TAP and AstraZeneca will cause oncologists to earn 30%-50% less a year, according to a study in the December 1 Journal of Clinical Oncology.

The case in question alleged that the two companies encouraged urologists who received free drug samples to provide the samples to their Medicare-insured prostate cancer patients and to bill Medicare the $1,200 charge for the product. As a result of the settlements, Medicare changed their basis for reimbursement from average wholesale price to average sales price.

According to the study, which was supported in part by grants from the National Cancer Institute, the change to average sales price is expected to result in an 8% decrease in the mean revenue of oncologists and a decrease in physician reimbursement for cancer drugs.

Go to the Journal of Clinical Oncology's Web site to read more about the study.

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