Episode 10 - Comparative Effectiveness Research

Due to the growing burden of the cost of cancer care, stakeholders in medical oncology have discussed initiatives to control costs and drive quality. It is often suggested that the results of comparative effectiveness research (CER) can help all parties to make more informed healthcare decisions.

In this segment, panelists Peter Salgo, MD; Ira M. Klein, MD, MBA, FACP; Michael Kolodziej, MD; Bryan Loy, MD; and Irwin W. Tischler, DO, discuss the use of CER in medical oncology. Drs Klein, Loy, and Tischler explain that CER has a great deal of potential; however, the United States has yet to use CER to its full potential for fear that it would be used to ration care, comments Dr Kolodziej. Variables that should be taken into account when utilizing CER include efficiency of care, total cost of care, and the concerns of consumers and patients, advises Dr Loy.

Considering CER in addition to the results of randomized controlled trials can be beneficial, notes Dr Tischler. Dr Klein adds that because clinical trials are conducted in controlled settings in highly selective patient populations, CER can provide information on effectiveness in “real-world” settings and patient populations.

Dr Kolodziej discusses the factors that concern stakeholders in regard to drug sequencing, and highlights the Green Park Consortium project, with which he is involved. Initiatives of the project include evaluating the sequencing of therapy in breast cancer and renal cell carcinoma, as many treatment options with overlapping mechanisms of action are available for these cancers.

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