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Oncology Pharmacy Education Network

Oncology pharmacy services standards and guidelines are addressed by several regulatory agencies and professional organizations. Standards and guidelines sometimes apply to specific settings of care (as an example, The Joint Commission for hospitals), but the principles pertaining to quality, safety, and effectiveness of cancer care are the concern of Oncology Pharmacy Services in all sites of care. 

With the increasing complexity of cancer care, new indications and new drug approvals, emerging biosimilars in oncology, recent advances in immunotherapy, the high cost cancer treatment, and the ever-evolving regulatory and reimbursement landscape, the challenges for Oncology Pharmacy Services are ongoing.

ACCC provides education, resources, and networking opportunities to help cancer programs navigate care coordination issues specific to pharmacy such as reimbursement, distribution, inventory management, communication and training through the Oncology Pharmacy Education Network (OPEN).

2018 Patient Assistance Guide 

From Oncology Issues

  • Drug-Specific Videos for Patient Chemotherapy Education
    By James L. Weese, MD, FACS; Kerry A. Twite, RN, MSN, AOCNS; Marija Bjegovich-Weidman, RN, MSN, OCN; and Amy J. Bock, RN, BSN, OCN, MBA
    Long, written descriptions of chemotherapy and its side effects, particularly when prescribing multiple drugs, are often ignored by patients who are overwhelmed by their cancer diagnosis and treatment. From the perspective of the patients, it was clear that all patients needed basic information regarding chemotherapy, including how to react to different situations while on chemotherapy and specifics about the drugs they were going to receive.
  • Another Wild Ride?
    By Leah Ralph
  • Improving Profitability & Service
    Learn how process improvements in an outpatient infusion center may strengthen financial performance. Included are a review process for non-formulary medications and new drug or service request form.
  • Oral Chemotherapy: What Your Patients Need to Know
    Elizabeth Bettencourt, RN, MSN, OCN
    Storage, handling, and disposal of oral agents; possible drug-drug and drug-food interactions; dosing requirements, a plan for missed doses, a refill process; and more on what your patients need to know about oral agents.
  • Worth the Wait?
    Leah Ralph
    In August 2015 the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) released its much-anticipated “mega-guidance” on the 340B Drug Pricing Program, proposing new limits on the program but stopping short of a complete overhaul, prompting mixed reviews from stakeholders.
  • Designing a Model Infusion Center: The Philips Ambient Experience
    A key element in this design is the ability for patients to personalize their surroundings with lighting and other aesthetic features, giving patients an increased sense of control over their environment.
  • Passionate Financial Support —An Antidote for Financial Toxicity
    Michael J. Reff, RPH, MBA; Hannah B. Peabody, CPHT; and Deborah R. Walters, RN, OCN
    Faced with the ever-growing cost of oral chemotherapy, our TPRxC team is passionate about securing financial support for our patients.
  • A Pharmacist-Managed Oral Chemotherapy Program
    The shift from infused to oral agents has implications for patients and cancer programs. This 2011 ACCC Innovator Award winning program explains its pharmacist-managed approach.
  • A Model Rural Chemotherapy Program
    This 2013 ACCC Innovator Award winner describes how their health system achieved the goal of establishing guidelines and standards of practice in all rural sites, both within and outside the system, to better ensure patient safety and quality care.
  •  Best of ASCO 2017
    Cary A. Presant, MD, FACP, FASCO
    ASCO 2017 was filled with new information and long lines as 39,000 oncologists worldwide came together to hear the latest advances in cancer care.
  •  The Role of the Oral Oncology Nurse Navigator
    Mary K. Anderson, BSN, RN, OCN; Michael J. Reff, RPH, MBA; Rebecca S. McMahon, MHA, BSN, RN, OCN; and Deborah R. Walters, RN, OCN
    While oncology programs and practices must take into account numerous considerations when ramping up their oral chemotherapy services, this article focuses on one unique and very important role to facilitate this transition: the oral oncology nurse navigator.
  • It's Not All About the ACA
    Leah Ralph
    Summer headlines have been dominated by congressional efforts to repeal and replace portions of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and find a politically palatable path forward to shoring up the nongroup insurance market.
  • Delivering Pharmacogenetic Testing in the Community Setting
    Mark Wagner, PharmD; Jennifer Eichmeyer, MS, CGC; Paul G. Montgomery, MD; Jessica Monitz, PharmD; Jesslie Modlin, PharmD; and Natalie Perry, BA
    In November 2014, St. Luke’s Mountain States Tumor Institute (MSTI), Boise, Idaho, initiated a pilot program to determine the feasibility of a pharmacogenetic testing program in a community cancer program.
  • A Misguided Experiment?
    Leah Ralph
    In early March, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) issued a proposal to implement a national demonstration program that would fundamentally change the way Medicare pays physicians and hospitals for Part B drugs.
  • Exploring the Issue of Cancer Drug Parity
    Tracy C. Wyant, RN-BC, MSN, AOCN, CHPN
    Understanding the magnitude and underlying considerations surrounding the multidimensional and controversial issue of cancer drug parity is important for evaluating the value of cancer treatments and the impact of related legislative efforts.

Additional Resources


Patient-Centered Scheduling: Costs & Benefits of Extending Practice Hours
This special report from ACCC examines the pros and cons of extended infusion suite hours. Included is tool to help practices and programs assess the feasibility of extending hours of care.

Oral Chemotherapy

Dispensing Pharmacy Patient Education Tool
Physician dispensing is governed by state law and regulated by State Boards of Pharmacy. While some states do not allow physician dispensing, most of the states that allow it require dispensing physicians to alert their patients about other options to fill their prescription(s). In response to this need, ACCC has developed this patient education tool that can be used across care settings.

Oncology Drug Database

Access ACCC's comprehensive resource for coding, billing, and reimbursement for oncology drugs.
Access the Database

ACCCBuzz Blog Posts

Oral Chemotherapy education