Clinical Authorization Specialist

Job Details

Job ID:

10 Brookline Place West, Brookline, MA 02445


Employment Type:
Full time

Work Location:
Remote: occasional time on campus


Working in a fast-paced, high volume, dynamic environment, the Clinical Authorization Specialist will bring clinical expertise to the prior authorization and appeals processes and serve as a liaison and patient advocate between Dana Farber Cancer Institute and various health plans.

Reporting to the Prior Authorization Supervisor , the Clinical Authorization Specialist is responsible for managing all work related to molecular pathology, high-cost drug, and off-label drug authorizations. The Clinical Authorization Specialist is also responsible for managing denials related to front-end prior authorization, biosimilar drugs, pharmacy-benefit exclusion drugs, and claims.

Located in Boston and the surrounding communities, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute is a leader in life changing breakthroughs in cancer research and patient care. We are united in our mission of conquering cancer, HIV/AIDS and related diseases. We strive to create an inclusive, diverse, and equitable environment where we provide compassionate and comprehensive care to patients of all backgrounds, and design programs to promote public health particularly among high-risk and underserved populations. We conduct groundbreaking research that advances treatment, we educate tomorrow's physician/researchers, and we work with amazing partners, including other Harvard Medical School-affiliated hospitals.


With direct oversight, the Clinical Authorization Specialist:

  • Manages approval process for clinically complex cases:
    • Discusses complex medical necessity cases in all aspects of the prior authorization work (on-label drug, off-label drug, laboratory testing, and others as assigned) with attending physicians.
    • Understands clinically complex medical situations and communicates appropriate medical information to the insurer.
    • Completes medical literature searches and/or coordinates appropriate provider-to-payer medical director discussions.
    • Collaborates with attending physicians on treatment alternatives when medical necessity coverage denials cannot be overturned.
    • Appropriately escalates complex cases to Drug Authorization Supervisor or Manager of Prior Authorizations.
  • Monitors email communication to the Drug Authorization Mailbox and distribution lists:
    • Triages work to the appropriate staff member or assists with finding the correct team for the inquiry.
    • Answers complex payer-related questions.
    • Coordinates with clinicians and other staff members to help resolve more complex inquiries.
  • Assists Drug Authorization Specialists with medical necessity denial review:
    • Ensures that all necessary medical information was provided to the third-party payer.
    • If necessary, helps clinical team understand denial and coordinates appeal process.
    • Creates cost estimates for waivers.
  • Root causes claim denials, reprocesses, and submits claim appeals.
  • Creates drug cost estimates for both on-label and off-label waivers and ABN’s. Communicates cost estimates to the clinical team and provides guidance on available assistance programs.
  • Completes Molecular Pathology requests with the goal of resolving coverage issues prior to performing the testing.
  • Review and monitor the drug authorization work queue, identifying patient treatment/therapy plans that require prior authorization.
  • Serve as a clinical resource to the Revenue Integrity and Billing Compliance team.
  • Performs other duties as assigned.


  • Minimum Education:
    • Bachelor’s degree required. BSN preferred.
  • Minimum Experience:
    • 1 year of clinical and/or related experience required. Case Management, Utilization Review and/or Prior Authorization experience is preferred.
  • Certification/Licensure/Registration:
    • Licensed as a Registered Nurse in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts preferred.


  • Knowledge of third-party payer rules and regulations highly desirable.
  • Good judgment, tact, sensitivity, and the ability to function in a fast paced, highly demanding environment.
  • Analytical and problem-solving skills.
  • Understanding and ability to work in various computing/information systems and Microsoft Office product suite.
  • Ability to mentor and educate team members, including by example.
  • Ability to function independently and prioritize work within established policies.
  • Ability to prioritize, meet pre-determined deadlines and work in high pressure situations.
  • Ability to work with sensitive patient information and maintain confidentiality.
  • Ability to work closely and effectively with colleagues across the organization including medical staff.

At Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, we work every day to create an innovative, caring, and inclusive environment where every patient, family, and staff member feels they belong.  As relentless as we are in our mission to reduce the burden of cancer for all, we are equally committed to diversifying our faculty and staff.  Cancer knows no boundaries and when it comes to hiring the most dedicated and diverse professionals, neither do we. If working in this kind of organization inspires you, we encourage you to apply.

Dana-Farber Cancer Institute is an equal opportunity employer and affirms the right of every qualified applicant to receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, gender identity or expression, national origin, sexual orientation, genetic information, disability, age, ancestry, military service, protected veteran status, or other characteristics protected by law.

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