The Planning Actively for Cancer Treatment (PACT) Act:

Providing Cancer Patients a Plan for Treatment and Survivorship

PACT Act Banner

The Planning Actively for Cancer Treatment (PACT) Act will encourage the development of a personalized cancer care plan for Medicare beneficiaries.

The PACT Act will:

  • Help cancer patients through the difficult process of cancer diagnosis, treatment choices, treatment management, and survivorship care by supplying them a written plan or roadmap.
  • Encourage a shared decision-making process between patients and their cancer care teams.
  • Support informed decision-making as treatment choices are becoming increasingly complex.
  • Empower the patient with tools to manage care from active treatment through long-term survivorship.

About the 2015 PACT Act

Why is a cancer plan necessary for each patient?How does the PACT Act encourage cancer care planning?Why is a new Medicare service necessary?List of PACT Act Supporters
In several evaluations of the cancer care delivery system, the Institute of Medicine (IOM) National Cancer Policy Forum has found that cancer patients rarely receive a plan of care. The IOM has placed a high value on a cancer care plan because the planning process triggers a solid treatment decision-making process and also facilitates the coordination of active treatment and supportive care, including management of nausea and vomiting, fatigue, anxiety, and depression.

After patients finish active treatment, they may transition into a different system for long-term survivorship care. These patients require monitoring of the effects of their cancer treatment and for cancer recurrence as well as follow-up care provided according to recommended schedules. A written plan facilitates the transition to survivorship and the long-term follow-up that is required.

The PACT Act would establish a new Medicare service for cancer care planning. The planning service could be provided to patients at the time of cancer diagnosis, at the end of active treatment and beginning of long-term survivorship, and when there is a significant change in treatment.

The cancer care planning process will produce a written plan of care provided to the patient for use in managing care.

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has placed a high value on care planning and coordination for all Medicare beneficiaries by establishing the transitional care management service and the complex chronic care management service. In addition, CMS plans in 2016 to launch the Oncology Care Model demonstration project that requires participating oncology practices to undertake cancer care planning as a core service.

The PACT Act is still necessary, in spite of the strong efforts by CMS to foster care planning for Medicare beneficiaries. Cancer care is especially complex because it is typically multi-disciplinary, requires coordination of active treatment and aggressive management of cancer symptoms and side effects of treatment, and encompasses elements of acute care and chronic care. The transitional care management service and complex chronic care management service are not adequate for cancer care management. In addition, many patients will receive their care in practices outside the Oncology Care Model and as a result will not benefit from the cancer care planning in that model.

The National Coalition for Cancer Survivorship is pleased to be joined in support of the PACT Act by the following organizations:
American Society for Clinical Oncology
American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network
Fight Colorectal Cancer
International Myeloma Foundation
Kidney Cancer Association
The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society
The LIVESTRONG Foundation
Lymphoma Research Foundation
National Comprehensive Cancer Network
National Patient Advocate Foundation
Ovarian Cancer National Alliance
Prevent Cancer Foundation
Susan G. Komen
The University of Arizona Cancer Center
University of Kansas Cancer Center
Comprehensive Cancer Center of Wake Forest University
Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center at Georgetown University

How Can I Help?

Members of Congress need to hear from their constituents that cancer care planning is a priority. There are two simple ways you can get in touch with your elected officials and to make your voice heard.

For reference when contacting your Member of Congress, you can use our PACT Act Fact Sheet. [PDF]

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