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By ASBMT President, Dr. John F. DiPersio It’s hard to believe that 2018 is almost over. It’s been both a productive and challenging year for ASBMT, but overall, we’re proud of the work we’ve done with our members and on behalf of them. Let’s take a look back and see at some of the incredible things we accomplished in 2018. The TCT Meetings of ASBMT and CIBMTR We had a record-breaking number of attendants at our meeting this year in Salt Lake City. Not only that, this was the first year under our new rebranded name, the Transplantation & Cellular Therapy Meetings of ASBMT and CIBMTR (also known as the TCT Meetings). Formerly called the BMT Tandem ...
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ASBMT, the American Society of Hematology, the American Cancer Society-Cancer Action Network, the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, the Lymphoma Research Foundation and the Personalized Medicine Coalition sponsored a journalist briefing on CAR-T on November 16 in Washington, D.C. A patient shared his experience receiving CAR-T at the University of Maryland and how the procedure saved his life when he had exhausted treatment options. His doctor, Dr. Aaron Rapaport, gave a presentation on the mechanics of CAR-T and discussed the process that the University of Maryland recently completed to become a Yescarta-certified facility. Meghan Gutierrez from the Lymphoma ...
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By Mikaela VanMoorleghem, Education and Training Coordinator Foundation for the Accreditation of Cellular Therapy Draft Seventh Edition NetCord-FACT International Cord Blood Standards Available for Public Comment The Foundation for the Accreditation of Cellular Therapy (FACT) published the draft Seventh Edition of the NetCord-FACT International Standards for Cord Blood Collection, Banking, and Release for Administration and accompanying Accreditation Manual for inspection and public comment for a 90-day period. Comments will be accepted from November 30, 2018 through March 1, 2019. The Standards apply to all phases of cord blood collection, banking, ...
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Literature summaries are provided as information only. Please refer to the original published articles for complete details on study methodology, results and discussion.   ***        Must read. Landmark publication that affects practice **           Recommend reading. Secondary paper that adds to literature *             Consider reading. Cursory importance to the practice   In this month’s Pharmacy SIG Literature Update: RIC transplant for older adults, next generation sequencing to identify relapse risk, oral vancomycin prophylaxis in adults, and C-diff treatment guidelines for pediatrics. And more! Allogeneic Transplant **Malki MM, ...
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The ASBMT Survivorship SIG is soliciting research proposals, which may be presented for discussion and feedback during the 2019 Survivorship SIG Meeting during the TCT Meetings of ASBMT & CIBMTR. Please consider submitting research concepts for presentation/discussion at the SIG meeting that focus on prospective research studies of any late effects / complications of autologous or allogeneic transplantation. Psychosocial complications, financial toxicities and caregiver issues are included in the scope of survivorship. The SIG does not have funding to support conduct of the research, but will serve as a facilitator for discussion and promoting collaborative ...
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Although our fearless leader in health policy is no longer with us, the work we do for ASBMT rolls on. As the ASBMT leadership continues the hiring process for Stephanie’s replacement, we will be working with a dedicated team of experts from Cavarocchi – Ruscio – Dennis (CRD) Associates. Erika Miller, JD, is a Senior Vice President & Counsel with CRD, and will be spearheading ASBMT’s policy and government relations work along with Stefanie Rinehart, VP. They are both subject matter experts with years of experience in payment and reimbursement policy, the Medicare program, and the appropriations process. We are looking forward to partnering with CRD on our ...
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On Nov. 13, ASBMT President-Elect Navneet Majhail, MD, MS, and Joseph Alvarnas, MD, participated in a Congressional Roundtable on Medicare’s reimbursement systems for CAR-T cell therapies. They provided a detailed overview of CAR-T cell therapy and examined potential solutions to keep Medicare’s reimbursement systems current and at pace with research and best practices. ASBMT sat down with Majhail to discuss how the meeting went, and what solutions ASBMT leadership would like to see when it comes to reimbursement methodology. ASBMT: It’s quite an honor to be asked to participate in a Congressional Roundtable – why do you think ASBMT was asked to participate? ...
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On behalf of the ASBMT Committee on Education, we are pleased to continue our monthly self-directed learning quiz "Basic Principles and Practices of Hematopoietic Cell Transplantation and Cell Therapy – Question and Answer Approach” for fellows in training, highlighting HCT and cell therapy topics. Answers to each question appear with evidence-based “non-exhaustive peer-review commentary. Our aim is to provide you with a credible and freely available educational resource. Questions were generated and reviewed by Syed Abutalib, M.D., Mark R. Litzow, M.D., and William A. Wood, M.D. To take this month’s quiz, click here .
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By Mikaela VanMoorleghem, Education and Training Coordinator, Foundation for t he Accreditation of Cellular Therapy (FACT) Join FACT for a Special Cord Blood Webinar in Support of World Cord Blood Day In anticipation of World Cord Blood Day on November 15, 2018, FACT invites you to attend a special cord blood webinar on Wednesday, November 14, 2018 at, 10:00 am ET, 15:00 GMT, and 16:00 pm CET.  Speakers include Dr. Éliane Gluckman, the first to perform a successful human umbilical cord blood transplant; Dr. Étienne Baudoux of Liège Cord Blood Bank; Dr. Diane Fournier of Hema-Quebec Cord Blood Bank; and Ms. Mai Duong, cord blood transplant recipient. ...
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This August, members of ASBMT’s leadership, including ASBMT President Dr. John DiPersio and President-Elect Dr. Navneet Majhail, had the chance to meet with Seema Verma, Administrator for the Centers of Medicare and Medicaid (CMS) to discuss Medicare inpatient final rule for CAR-T therapies. Administrator Verma asked ASBMT to submit comments regarding potential short-term and long-term solutions within the current pay systems, along with potential options for demonstration projects. ASBMT and our partners at the American Society of Hematology (ASH) worked together to identify possible solutions for the primary areas of concern. On Thursday, Nov. 1, ASBMT ...
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About 10 years ago, the leaders of ASBMT wondered if there was a better way to have an open dialogue among industry and BMT leaders. Pharmaceutical and medical device companies played such an important part in cellular transplantation – so why shouldn’t they have a seat at the table when discussing BMT challenges? “I remember that, when I chaired the Past Presidents Committee, we realized we needed a more focused purpose for the group,” said former ASBMT President Armand Keating, MD. “We realized we needed corporate help in providing funding support for training BMT fellows.” From that grew ASBMT’s Corporate Council, a coalition of senior executives from ...
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As you may have seen in a separate communication, I will be leaving the ASBMT in early November. I am not gifted enough with words to adequately express my deep respect for the individuals that make up this community. And a community is exactly what you are – the multidisciplinary, collaborative efforts in this field are amazing. I have always viewed my contribution as minor in comparison to yours, but my goal was always to do my best in reducing the administrative barriers that plague your teams as you attempt to provide the best possible care for your patients. In the 10 years that I have been working on these issues between my time at the NMDP and ASBMT, ...
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The International Society of Cell & Gene Therapy (ISCT) is now accepting applications for the 2019 Cell Therapy Training Course. This educational opportunity is a joint effort between ASBMT and ISCT. Twelve scholars are selected from the applicants, and given hands-on training in cell therapy from some of the best minds in the field. This five-day intensive workshop helps junior cell therapy researchers take their research project from bench to bedside.The biennial event is an all-expenses paid experience for those chosen to attend. Participants are competitively selected, and preference is given to fellows and faculty with no more than two years of BMT ...
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The Cord Blood Association is offering free access to presentations from September’s Cord Blood Connect international congress. The meeting, which was held in Miami Beach this year, brought together members from all components of the cord blood community, including private and public banking, clinical and laboratory investigations, manufacturing, admiration, education and training. It’s comprised of several different non-profit organizations, including ASBMT. All the presentations from the event are available online for on-demand streaming for free. Each presentation includes not only the video, but the visuals presented as well. “Just because you didn’t ...
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Literature summaries are provided as information only. Please refer to the original published articles for complete details on study methodology, results and discussion. ***        Must read. Landmark publication that affects practice **           Recommend reading. Secondary paper that adds to literature *             Consider reading. Cursory importance to the practice Allogeneic Transplant **Allen CE, Marsh R, Dawson P, et al. Reduced-intensity conditioning for hematopoietic cell transplant for HLH and primary immune deficiencies. Blood . 2018;132:1438-51. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/29997222 Multicenter, prospective phase ...
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Since she joined ASBMT in 2016, Director of Health Policy & Strategic Relations Stephanie Farnia has been a positive force in our community.    Not only has her professionalism been unwavering, her passion for the field of cellular transplantation has been a huge asset to the ASBMT team. It's why it's incredibly bittersweet to announce that Stephanie is leaving our organization for an incredible opportunity that has yet to be announced. Her new role will focus on developing a system to implement coverage and payment mechanisms for emerging cell and gene therapies.    This is a unique position in which Stephanie will no doubt thrive—she can continue her ...
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The National Uniform Billing Committee (NUBC) finalized a series of new codes on inpatient claims for cell and gene therapies, thanks in part to the leadership of ASBMT. These changes are expected to go live on April 1, 2019. The changes may assist with improved provider reimbursement over time, which may decrease payment-related access barriers. Junga Shah and Valerie Rinkle, from Nimitt Consulting, advocated for this change on behalf of ASBMT. In a letter submitted to Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) in November 2017, ASBMT outlined a detailed scope of the changes that would need to be made by NUBC on this issue. The Society was then ...
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Abstract submission for the TCT Meetings of ASBMT & CIBMTR (Houston, TX, February 20-24, 2019) is open through October 12, 2018. Please submit your abstract and you may have the opportunity to present your research and ideas to colleagues from around the world. For more details, a list of topics, and instructions on how to submit your work, please click here .
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The ASBMT Pharmacy SIG Education Committee is excited to share the development of an Online Journal Club. The goal of these journal clubs will be to provide education and more in-depth review of literature related to the field of stem cell transplantation and cellular therapy and will be provided a few times a year. The first online journal club will be Wednesday October 10 th , from 3-4 PM CST  and will be presented by Dr. Cameron Ninos who will highlight an in-depth review regarding the article “ Shortened-duration Tacrolimus after nonmyeloablative, HLA-haploidentical bone marrow transplantation ”.  We hope you can join us for this exciting new initiative. ...
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By ASBMT President John F. DiPersio, MD, PhD There’s something really special about being part of a community like ASBMT. Not only do we create strong friendships with our colleagues, we get the chance to share with one another the incredible things we’re doing. Our organization is made up of several different types of professionals. From researchers to clinicians, we all bring something unique to the table. Which is why I was delighted to attend ASBMT’s CEC meeting in Nashville on Sept. 20. The CEC was phenomenally well attended.  The talks covered many aspects of transplant and cellular therapy treatments and were well received by all.  The faculty ...
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