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Cancer Therapy Decision Needs More Time, Medicare Chief Says

May 22, 2019, 9:50 PM

Medicare’s delayed decision on whether to cover a breakthrough cancer therapy reflects the program’s inexperience with cutting-edge medications and the enormous financial pressure that a wave of costly new gene therapy drugs will place on the financially troubled program.

That is the take from Medicare Administrator Seema Verma. “This is new ground for us,” Verma said of the program’s proposal to cover CAR T-cell therapy for all program enrollees. “So we want to make sure that we’re doing this appropriately, dotting our ‘I’s and crossing our ‘T’s, which is taking a little bit more time because it’s not a routine...

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