Cancer Care Planning and Communications ActThe Cancer Care Planning and Communications Act (CCPCA), H.R. 3835

Providing Cancer Patients a Plan for Treatment and Survivorship

Congressman Mark DeSaulnier (D-CA) and Congressman Buddy Carter (R-TX) recently reintroduced the bipartisan H.R. 3835 Cancer Care Planning and Communications Act, or CCPCA. Rep. DeSaulnier is a cancer survivor and Rep. Carter is a pharmacist. Together, they share an understanding of the physical and emotional benefits of care planning for patients and their families facing a cancer diagnosis.

Most cancer patients still do not receive a written plan that explains their diagnosis, prognosis, treatments, and expected symptoms, leaving them to navigate the complexities of a cancer diagnosis without clear direction or knowing what to expect from their care. Research has confirmed that coordinated cancer care outlined in a written care plan—care that integrates active treatment and symptom management—improves patient outcomes, increases patient satisfaction, and reduces utilization of health care resources.

Pilots don’t take off without a flight pattern, and architects don’t break ground without a blueprint. Patients diagnosed with cancer are taking the journey of their life, literally, so the role of the cancer treatment plan in starting a conversation, in promoting comprehension and retention, in managing expectations and anxiety, and providing continuity across settings and episodes is so important.
Participant from previous NCCS workshop on cancer care planning.
NCCS is currently joined in support of CCPCA by 10 patient and professional organizations and 3 cancer centers, with more to be added soon.
Read the CCPC Act Fact Sheet [PDF] »

What Does CCPCA Do?

Care Coordination InfographicCCPCA encourages the development of a personalized cancer care plan for Medicare beneficiaries.

CCPCA will:

  • Help cancer patients through the difficult process of cancer diagnosis, treatment choices, treatment management, and survivorship care by supplying them with a written plan or roadmap.
  • Promote shared decision-making between patients and their cancer care teams and support informed decisions, as treatment choices are becoming increasingly complex.
  • Empower patients with information necessary to help manage and coordinate their care through diagnosis, treatment, and survivorship.

CCPCA was previously introduced as the Planning Actively for Cancer Treatment (PACT) Act in past Congresses, and continues a longtime effort of the National Coalition for Cancer Survivorship to increase cancer care planning implementation throughout the country.

View a sample care plan [PDF]

Take Action

Webinar: CCPCA – What It Does and How to Get Involved

In this webinar, NCCS CEO Shelley Fuld Nasso talks about why the CCPCA is so important and how you can advocate for the bill while your lawmakers are at home during August recess.

Watch on YouTube »

Download the webinar slide deck » [PDF]
“Telling Your Story” worksheet » [PDF]

CCPCA Toolkit – Meet Your Members of Congress During August Recess

NCCS created a step-by-step guide to walk you through the process of setting up meetings with your legislators while they are at home during recess.

CCPCA Toolkit for Meeting Your Legislators »
For reference when contacting your representative, use our CCPCA Fact Sheet [PDF].

Write Your Member of Congress

Ask your representative to co-sponsor CCPCA to promote cancer care planning and care coordination! Use the following form to send your representative a personalized email.

Call Your Member of Congress

Members of Congress need to hear from constituents that cancer care planning is a priority. Calling your elected officials is easy and an important way to exercise your right as a citizen. Remember that it is your elected official’s job—and his/her staff members—to listen to you, as a constituent!

Call Your Representative at (844) 257-6227
US Capitol

Some tips for the call:

  1. Ask for the staff member who covers health issues.
  2. Mention your connection to cancer, as a survivor, caregiver, provider, family member, etc.
  3. Stress the importance of cancer care planning and coordination:
    • Care planning encourages important doctor-patient discussions and a shared decision-making process.
    • Without a care plan, patients must navigate the complexities of a cancer diagnosis on their own.
    • H.R. 3835, The Cancer Care Planning and Communications Act, will ensure that every Medicare-eligible cancer patient has access to cancer care planning and coordination, which will improve cancer care and reduce inefficiencies in the system.

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  4. If appropriate, share your experience with cancer care planning. If you received a care plan, how did it help you? If you did not receive a care plan, how might it have helped you?
  5. Ask your Representative to please co-sponsor the bipartisan H.R. 3835, the Cancer Care Planning and Communications Act.

After you call:

It would be incredibly helpful to know how the call went.

  • We do not sell your data to third parties—Read our Privacy Policy
  • Can you share who you spoke to in the office? Did they sound like they supported or opposed the bill? Did they request more information or any other follow up?
  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

More About CCPCA

How does CCPCA encourage cancer care planning?

CCPCA would establish a new Medicare service for cancer care planning. A plan can be developed and shared with the Medicare beneficiary at several points in the cancer care continuum, including:

  • At the time of diagnosis, for the purposes of planning initial active treatment;
  • When there is any substantial change in the condition of the individual, recurrence of disease, changes in the individual’s treatment preferences, or significant revision of the elements of curative care or symptom management for the individual; and
  • At the completion of primary treatment for cancer, when the plan may serve as a follow-up survivorship care plan.
Why is a cancer plan necessary for each patient?
In several evaluations of the cancer care system, the National Academy of Medicine (NAM) National Cancer Policy Forum has found that cancer patients rarely receive a plan of care. The NAM has said that patients should receive a cancer care plan because the planning process triggers a solid treatment decision-making process and facilitates the coordination of 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 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 ongoing follow-up that is required.

View a sample care plan [PDF]
Why is a new Medicare service necessary?
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.

The Oncology Care Model (OCM) was launched by CMS in 2016 and is a step in the right direction for cancer care planning. Medicare beneficiaries treated in one of the 190 OCM practices have access to a treatment plan, but not necessarily a survivorship care plan.

ALL Medicare beneficiaries should have access to this service, not just the ones who receive their care in OCM practices.

Supporting Organizations and Cancer Centers
The National Coalition for Cancer Survivorship is pleased to be joined by the following organizations and cancer centers in support of CCPCA:

Patient and Professional Organizations

American Society for Radiation Oncology (ASTRO)
Cancer Legal Resource Center
Children’s Cause for Cancer Advocacy (CCCA)
Lacuna Loft
LUNGevity Foundation
Lymphoma Research Foundation
National Coalition for Cancer Survivorship (NCCS)
National Patient Advocate Foundation
Susan G. Komen
Triage Cancer

Cancer Centers

Georgetown Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center
Laura and Isaac Perlmutter Cancer Center at NYU Langone
Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center
University of Virginia Cancer Center