Lalan Wilfong, MD, executive vice president, Value Based Care & Quality Programs, Texas Oncology, and co-chair, Payment Reform, Community Oncology Alliance, discusses implications of quality metrics in cancer care and what perspectives on the topic he is looking forward to hearing at the 2021 Community Oncology Conference.
Lalan Wilfong, MD, is the executive vice president of Value Based Care & Quality Programs at Texas Oncology and Payment Reform Co-Chair at the Community Oncology Alliance.
For the 2021 Community Oncology Conference, a panel will discuss quality measurement in cancer care. How has use of quality metrics influenced the way in which cancer care has been delivered and perceived in recent years?
Quality metrics have influenced the way that we measure and perceive cancer care by focusing us more on what means most to patients, and how do we improve the outcomes that we provide versus just managing patients as best we see.
Things like metrics in the Oncology Care Model for reducing hospitalizations and reducing ED [emergency department] visits makes us think through the entire patient care continuum versus focusing on just what's happening that day with a patient.
So, it has led to significant changes in the way that we think and deliver cancer care. That being said, I am looking forward to the session on quality measures because we need to think through better how we reduce the burden on reporting from practices, which is a significant issue for reporting quality metrics, while at the same time really focusing on those that impact outcomes the most.
What perspectives are you looking forward to hearing during the panel discussion?
I think for my panel discussion, we're going to talk about the new model for cancer care, and one of the things we're going to discuss is how it needs to be flexible. Different practices, different payers, patient populations need different focus to continue to improve the value we provide them.
Some practices are very sophisticated, some payers are sophisticated—some are not. So, how do you get everybody moving forward? And that's one of the things that we will discuss is the flexibility needed for us all to get there, because there's not going to be a one-size fits all model that we can take forward. So I'm really looking forward to discussing that and hearing opinions on that process.