The Lynx Group

Value in Oncology

Experts at this roundtable discussion addressed high patient costs, achieving greater value in oncology care, and the desire for access to comparative data.
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In a January 3, 2018, statement from FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb, MD, the FDA announced new steps to promote generic drug competition as a way to expand potential access to inexpensive medicines, which would be especially helpful for patients with cancer. These new steps are a part of the FDA’s ongoing implementation of the Drug Competition Action Plan.
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Innovation takes time, especially when it comes to cancer research. However, delays in the adoption of novel oncology treatments can have a significant impact on patient health, reported Jason Shafrin, PhD, Director of Healthcare Quality and Value-Based Research Methods, and Senior Research Economist, Precision Health Economics, Los Angeles, CA, who presented the results of a geographic-based analysis of claims data at the 2017 Cancer Survivorship Symposium.
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Orlando, FL—Non–small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC) comprises several different subtypes, necessitating broad molecular panel testing to understand the correct diagnosis and the appropriate treatment, said Wallace Akerley, MD, Senior Director, Community Oncology Research, Huntsman Cancer Institute, University of Utah, Salt Lake City, at the 2017 National Comprehensive Cancer Network (NCCN) annual conference.
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Advances in immunotherapy are benefiting increasing numbers of patients living with cancer. Since 2011, the FDA approved 15 immunotherapies in oncology, including 5 immunotherapy drugs in 2016. This surge of progress using cancer immunotherapy has led the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) to name “Immunotherapy 2.0” as its cancer advance of the year for a second year in a row.
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Implementing clinical pathways for the management of patients with metastatic non–small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC) led to a dramatic reduction in the total cost of care, while maintaining clinical outcomes, according to a study of 370 patients with NSCLC conducted at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute in Boston.
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Chicago, IL—Escalating drug prices have put value frameworks in the spotlight, and the identification of the key questions and the audience addressed in each value framework is vital to understanding the value landscape, said Kasia Shields, PharmD, MBA, BCOP, BCPS, Director, Medical Communications, Xcenda/AmerisourceBergen, at the 2016 Hematology/Oncology Pharmacy Association Oncology Pharmacy Practice Management Program.
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Former Senator Bill Frist, MD, opened the 2017 Cancer Center Business Summit in Las Vegas, NV, in early February, with a smile and a warning that we are in unfamiliar territory as the new Congress and the new administration move into 2017, territory that may occur only 2 or 3 times in a century. He said that, “For the first time since 1929, the GOP [the Republican Party] controls Congress, the White House, most governorships and state houses, as well as the Supreme Court.”
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St Louis, MO—Financial counselors can help patients find assistance with the often-prohibitive costs of cancer treatment. According to Jordan Karwedsky, a financial counselor at HSHS St Vincent Regional Cancer Center and Green Bay Oncology, Green Bay, WI, patients at these organizations saved more than $1 million on intravenous and oral chemotherapy in 2015 through copay assistance.
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Las Vegas, NV—A panel discussion at the 2017 Cancer Center Business Summit revealed continuing gaps in the evolution of healthcare reform among providers, payers, and patients with cancer. Michael Kolodziej, MD, National Medical Director, Managed Care Strategy, Flatiron Health, New York, NY—an oncologist with experience on the provider and the payer sides—moderated the panel discussion, which offered perspectives from the trenches on healthcare reform.
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