Immunotherapy - Episode 13
As the panelists continue discussing how healthcare reform will affect cancer therapy, the experts believe that although cost of therapy is a concern when treating patients, it does not form the entire equation that should be used when considering a treatment plan. Cost is an additional factor that should be assessed when determining value.
Daniel J. George, MD, explains that when determining the value of a treatment option, such as immunotherapy, medical professionals need to use an equation of quality over cost.
Unfortunately, Dr George fears that practitioners may feel that utilizing more expensive therapies due to improved outlooks on quality for their patients may cause practitioners to feel as though they are being penalized. Under this new model, it is important that medical professionals understand that the lowest cost should not be a deciding factor when considering immunotherapy treatment.
Oncologists will need to become comfortable with this new model, explains Michael Kolodziej, MD. In addition to reviewing data, oncologists will need to practice transparency, fairness, shared decision making, and consumerism, which are all factors that will affect the results of the new healthcare system.