By Jennifer Hinkel, NCCN e-Bulletin Editor-in-Chief
This summer, more than 700 managed care case managers, medical directors, and other clinical specialists attended NCCN educational programs aimed specifically at managed care professionals who work with patients who have been diagnosed with cancer. The goal of the program is to provide relevant, up-to-date, and actionable information to case managers and medical directors in managed care organizations and other settings.
“Many case managers and medical directors working with cancer cases do not have a background in oncology. In addition, with the many rapid changes in technology and new advances available for cancer treatment, it can be difficult to know where to go for up-to-date information. Through the NCCN Oncology Case Management Program™, NCCN provides managed care professionals with access to experts in the field of oncology and delivers material that can be put into practice immediately for those working with cancer cases,” said Liz Danielson, Director of Payor Relations at NCCN.
The two most recent programs, a July 15 webcast on non-small cell lung cancer and an August 18 webcast on prostate cancer, attracted more than 700 participants. The non-small cell lung cancer program was presented by Dr. Mohammad Jahanzeb of University of Tennessee Cancer Institute and addressed lung cancer screening and the role of surgery, radiation therapy, and chemotherapy in the treatment of patients with non-small cell lung cancer. The prostate cancer program was presented by Dr. James Mohler of Roswell Park Cancer Institute; it focused on treatment options for all stages of prostate cancer and addressed the many considerations to be taken in account when deciding what treatment to receive. This program also addressed diagnosis, grading, and staging of prostate cancer and the fundamentals of new technologies used in prostate cancer treatment, including robotic prostatectomy and IMRT.
“I was able to familiarize myself with the NCCN Guidelines and learned how to find information to help me take care of my patients more easily,” said one participant of the online program.
“Because of my deeper understanding of the treatment of this disease I will be able to offer members I work with better counsel as to what they can expect and also what the best treatment entails,” said another program attendee.
Other NCCN Oncology Case Management Program™ webinars include a September 15 seminar on breast cancer, to be presented by Dr. Harold J. Burstein of Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, and a November 3 seminar on colorectal cancers to be presented by Dr. Paul F. Engstrom of Fox Chase Cancer Center.
In addition to online programs, experts from the NCCN Member Institutions also present live NCCN Oncology Case Management Program™ sessions that participants attend as part of a day-long event. The next live meeting, which will take place on Friday, October 2, 2009 in New York City, will include sessions on communicating with cancer patients and addressing end-of-life issues, an extensive overview of complex cancers and a segment on understanding cancer clinical trials.