Randall Oyer, MD
To demonstrate their delivery of comprehensive, high-quality cancer care, many cancer programs across the country seek accreditation from The American College of Surgeons Commission on Cancer (CoC). When a program earns CoC accreditation, it is recognized for its commitment to excellence in multidisciplinary patient-centered care. The requirements to earn and maintain CoC accreditation are detailed in the Commission on Cancer’s Cancer Program Standards.
Multiple developments are driving the rapid pace of change in cancer care. New discoveries about the biology of cancers as well as new drugs, indications, payment models, data collection and reporting requirements, and EHRs are just a few. Demonstrating quality care to all oncology stakeholders is more important than ever.
But reviewing and revising quality standards in this dynamic environment is no easy task.
Consider just the last seven years. In 2012, the CoC Cancer Program Standards were revised and updated. The addition of Chapter 3, “Continuum of Care Services,” introduced three new Standards: 3.1 Patient Navigation Process, 3.2 Psychosocial Distress Screening, and 3.3 Survivorship Care Plan.
In 2016, the CoC released a new edition of the Cancer Program Standards with further revisions.
Late last year, the CoC announced the launch of a project to “review, analyze, and improve the standards.” The goal: “to ensure that the CoC’s standards result in improvement of patient care, are clearly interpretable, and are accurately measuring the quality of a cancer program.”
Then in spring 2019, the CoC released the draft standards for public feedback. These were open for a several-week public comment period that closed on June 3.
It’s no surprise that the CoC’s draft standards fueled a lively discussion ACCC’s members-only online discussion forum. ACCC members brought multidisciplinary perspectives to the proposed changes and encouraged one another to submit feedback to the CoC.
Although the official comment period ended in early June, ACCCBuzz asked to share a few of our members’ views on the likely real-world impact of some of the proposed changes in three areas: Cancer Registry Quality Control, Quality Improvement, and Survivorship Care Plan.
New Draft Standards 5.4, 5.5, 5.6, and 5.7 Dictating and Formatting of Operative Reports
New Draft Standard 7.3 Quality Improvement
New Draft Standard XX Survivorship Care Plan No Longer Required
On November 21, the Commission on Cancer Education Summit—2020: A Glimpse into the Future will focus on the update to the Standards. The following day, there will be half-day workshop on the data submission system and reports under the National Cancer Database’s (NCDB) new data platform, also slated for 2020. Learn more and stay tuned for updates.
Randall A. Oyer, MD, is ACCC President-Elect and ACCC Liaison to the Commission on Cancer. Dr. Oyer is medical director of the Cancer Institute, medical director of Oncology, chair of Cancer Committee, chair of the Oncology Physicians Advisory Council, and medical director of the Cancer Risk Evaluation (Cancer Genetics) Program at Penn Medicine Lancaster General.
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