Among many other things, Part B covers prescription medications administered in a doctor’s office setting to treat chronic and complicated conditions, including cancer and immune disorders. In 2013, six out of ten of the most administered medications under Part B were those that treat cancer or the side effects of chemotherapy.
Patients with chronic conditions, like cancer, severe arthritis, eye diseases and more, work with their physician to identify the specific treatment or combination of treatments to best address their individual needs. Part B allows flexibility and access to a range of treatment options, enabling physicians to tailor treatments specifically for their patients.
Part B’s reimbursement structure has assisted the program in successfully controlling costs, with Part B medication prices remaining stable year over year. In 2016, prices for 22 of the top 50 Part B drugs changed by 2 percent or less and 15 of the top 50 drugs decreased in price.
Altering this program’s reimbursement structure would impede doctors’ ability to provide care to Medicare patients. This could not only restrict patient access to specific medications their doctor recommends, but it could also disrupt a patient’s currently effective treatment plan.