arthritis advocacy news and regulatory letters

Advocacy News & Regulatory Letters

April 28

Ann Palmer, President and CEO of the Arthritis Foundation, Addresses Congressional Leadership about Continued Concerns with the American Health Care Act

Ann Palmer addressed Congressional Leadership in a letter that expresses concern about the American Health Care Act (ACHA) and MacArthur Amendment. The letter outlines several policy recommendations that the Arthritis Foundation believes are critical to ensure that arthritis patients can continue to access and afford their health care. The Arthritis Foundation remains concerned that some provisions of the AHCA could create access barriers to the care of people with arthritis. Read the letter.

April 7

Arthritis Foundation Proclaims a Patient Advocacy Win Through Its Work with the Institute for Clinical and Economic Review (ICER)

On April 7, 2017, ICER released the final report finding drug prices high but citing inadequate evidence to distinguish clinical benefit between the rheumatoid arthritis (RA) treatments. The organization also provided recommendations to the health care industry to ensure continuity and increased access to care for patients with RA. The Arthritis Foundation helped influence ICER by sharing stories of people living with RA and their experiences with disease-modifying drugs in managing their disease. Read more about our involvement with ICER.

April 3, 2017

Arthritis Foundation Signs Letter to the Institute for Clinical and Economic Review (ICER)  on the Proposed Revisions to ICER’s Value Framework

The Arthritis Foundation joined 37 other patient and provider groups by signing a letter from the Partnership to Improve Patient Care (PIPC) to provide feedback on proposed revisions to ICER’s value framework. Though ICER has solicited comments from stakeholders on its value assessment framework, the Arthritis Foundation believes there are additional steps that ICER must take beyond its proposed revisions to ensure that its framework is truly patient centered. Read the letter here.

April 3, 2017

Arthritis Foundation Submits Comments to The Institute for Clinical and Economic Review (ICER) on the Public Engagement Process

The Institute for Clinical and Economic Review (ICER) recently published draft guides on patient participation and an open input guide for patients. Representatives from the Arthritis Foundation, including five patients, reviewed ICER’s materials and provided written commentary on the guides. Striving to ensure the patient voice is heard, we urged ICER to make the patient engagement process transparent and easy to navigate. Read the letter here.

April 3, 2017

Arthritis Foundation Signs Letter to the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPac) Urging Reconsideration of Harmful Changes to PartB

The Arthritis Foundation joined more than 180 patient and provider groups in signing a letter from the Part B Access for Seniors and Physicians (ASP) Coalition, urging MedPac to reconsider harmful proposed changes to PartB which provides seniors access to lifesaving medicines. Preserving access must be a priority! The Arthritis Foundation is committed to protecting patient's access to the treatments they need. Read the letter here.

March 21, 2017

Arthritis Foundation Supports Medicaid Expansion along with Nearly 30 Other Patient Advocacy Organizations in Sign on Letter to House Leadership

The Arthritis Foundation speaks out against proposals to phase our Medicaid expansion along with nearly 30 other patient advocacy organizations in sign-on letter to House Leadership. The letter emphasizes that Medicaid is critical for patients, that converting the federal financing of Medicaid to a per capita cap system would negatively impact patients, and that failing to expand Medicaid would result in millions of people losing coverage. Moving forward, the Arthritis Foundation hopes to continue dialogue with House Leadership that will help to arrive at solutions that provide all Americans with high-quality, affordable care. Read the letter here!

March 21, 2017

Ann Palmer, President and CEO of the Arthritis Foundation, Addresses Congressional Leadership to Raise Concerns about the American Health Care Act

Ann Palmer addressed Congressional Leadership in a letter that expresses concern about the American Health Care Act (ACHA). The letter outlines several of our patient principles that the Arthritis Foundation is encouraged to see included in the AHCA, along with concerns about other patient protections not considered in the bill. These provisions are critical to ensure that arthritis patients can continue to access and afford their health care. The Arthritis Foundation remains concerned that some provisions of the AHCA could create access barriers to the care people with arthritis. Read the letter here.

March 15, 2017

Arthritis Foundation Encourages Members of Congress to Increase Funding and Support for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Arthritis Program

The Arthritis Foundation, along with seven other patient and provider groups, signed onto letters to the United States House of Representatives and Senate asking for both a strong topline appropriation for the CDC Division of Population Health, and an appropriation of $16 million to the CDC Arthritis Program in the FY18 Labor, HHS, and Education Appropriations bill. The letter calls on Members of Congress to increase in funding for the CDC Arthritis Program by $5 million to meet the growing demand and need for arthritis research in the United States.  An estimated 78 million Americans will have arthritis by 2040. It is the leading cause of disability in the US, and it contributes to over $156 billion a year in direct medical costs and lost productivity. Read the letter to the Senate and the letter to the House.

March 15, 2017

Arthritis Foundation Comments on Proposed Rule on Orthotics and Prosthetics from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services

Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) proposed a rule that would add  requirements to  the credentials needed for qualified practitioners to furnish and fabricate prosthetics and custom-fabricated orthotics, and for qualified suppliers to fabricate prosthetics and custom-fabricated orthotics. The Arthritis Foundation has submitted public comments to CMS seeking further clarification on certain provisions of the rule. The Foundation cannot support any provisions that could disrupt patient care and diminish quality of life for arthritis patients. Read the letter here.

March 13, 2017

Arthritis Foundation Shares Official Statement on American Health Care Act (AHCA)

Arthritis is a complex, chronic condition and people with arthritis depend on access to timely, ongoing care to control their disease. For many, access to health care is the difference between being disabled and being a fully functioning member of society.

The Arthritis Foundation believes people with arthritis should not fear that they will be unable to afford or access health care, including physicians, medications and other treatments. As such, we are sharing the principles we urge Congress to consider as it works towards health reform replacement legislation.

March 9, 2017

Arthritis Foundation Signs Letter to Support Reduced Out of Pocket Costs for Patients in Health Care Reform

The Arthritis Foundation joined 35 patient and provider groups to sign onto a letter from the Coalition for Accessible Treatments to urge the leadership on Capitol Hill to ensure healthcare legislation related to the Affordable Care Act (ACA) reduces out-of-pocket costs for patients and their families. The Arthritis Foundation is committed to continuing to protect patients with arthritis conditions attain access to the treatments they need. Read the letter here.

March 7, 2017

The Arthritis Foundation Submits Testimony in Support of Increased Funding for the CDC Arthritis Program

The Arthritis Foundation submitted written testimony to the House Appropriations Committee asking for an increase in funding for the CDC Arthritis Program – the only federal program dedicated solely to arthritis – and for sufficient funding for the National Institutes of Health to build on its investment in arthritis research. Read the testimony here.

March 3, 2017

Arthritis Foundation Sends Letter to Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) on Important Insurance Market Protections

The Arthritis Foundation sent a letter to HHS Secretary Tom Price, MD on a proposal he put out intended to stabilize the Affordable Care Act (ACA) Health Exchange market. The proposal would make changes to open enrollment periods and annual guarantees of coverage, among other things. The Arthritis Foundation stressed the need for people with arthritis to have personalized resources to help them make the best health plan decisions, and to have continuous, affordable access to the care that best suits their needs. Read the letter here.

February 17, 2017

Arthritis Foundation Submits Comments to The Institute for Clinical and Economic Review (ICER) on their Draft Evidence Report for their Review of Rheumatoid Arthritis Drugs

The Institute for Clinical and Economic Review (ICER) recently published a draft evidence report on the review of rheumatoid arthritis (RA) drugs. The Arthritis Foundation has provided written and verbal commentary to ICER on this report to help to ensure that patient voices are heard by ICER. It is imperative that input from patients and providers is considered and included during the development of a review for life changing treatments like those used for rheumatoid arthritis. Read the letter here.

Visit our page to learn more about the written and verbal commentary we have provided to ICER.

February 13, 2017

Arthritis Foundation Signs Letter to the Trump Administration in Support of Patient Centered Health Care Reform

The Arthritis Foundation, along with 200 other patient and community organizations, signed onto an I Am Essential coalition letter to the newly confirmed Secretary of Health and Human Services, Tom Price. The letter advocates for patient centric health reform legislation and urges the Trump administration to maintain the many important protections patients have gained through the Affordable Care Act that ensure they can access the care and treatment their providers prescribe. In the letter, the coalition supports accessibility, affordability, quality, responsiveness, choices and transparency, and innovative patient-care. Read the letter here.

January 30, 2017

Arthritis Foundation Provides Written and Verbal Commentary to Institute for Clinical and Economic Review (ICER)

ICER is a Boston-based non-profit organization that evaluates the clinical effectiveness and the cost of medical tests, treatments and delivery system innovations. Currently, ICER is reviewing rheumatoid arthritis therapies and will develop a report assessing their clinical effectiveness and value. ICER has also developed a value assessment framework to assess the cost and value of medications that many stakeholders have called into question. The Arthritis Foundation has provided written and verbal commentary and input to ICER at all available points so far in this evaluation process for RA drugs.

Visit our page to learn more about the written and verbal commentary we have provided and to see the summary of the remaining timeline in ICER’s review process for RA drugs.

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