Equal reimbursement for oral versus IV anticancer agents—also known as oral parity—has been a legislative priority for ONS since the first bill was introduced in the U.S. Congress eight years ago. Working through ONS’s broad coalitions, ONS members have championed patient access to oral anticancer therapies to the seven remaining states without a similar law on the books. Building on that work, on June 15, 2023, U.S. Senators Tina Smith (D-MN) and Jerry Moran (R-KS) reintroduced the bipartisan Cancer Drug Parity Act to further support that goal.

If adapted, the bill would prevent “insurers from charging higher copayments for those medications than for chemotherapy medicine delivered intravenously.” Without the regulation, many patients face prohibited out-of-pocket costs—sometimes more than $2,000 per month–for their cancer treatments. The bill would level the costs of oral and IV treatments and ease many patients’ financial burdens.

“Oral medications have turned cancer into a manageable chronic disease for many,” Smith said. ONS has formally signed support for the bill.