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National Comprehensive Cancer Network

Educational Events & Programs

Patient Advocacy Summit:
Value in Cancer Care – Patient Perspectives

Patient Advocacy - Patient Perspectives
Patient Advocacy Summit: Value in Cancer Care - Patient Perspectives on Access to Cancer Care: Panel Video 1

Patient Advocacy -  Defining Value
Patient Advocacy Summit: Value in Cancer Care - Defining Value for Patients with Cancer: Panel Video 2

Patient Advocacy -  Cost of Cancer Care
Patient Advocacy Summit: Value in Cancer Care - Patient Perspectives on the Cost of Cancer Care: Panel Video 3

Patient Advocacy -  Summary

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On Tuesday, December 1, 2015, the National Comprehensive Cancer Network® (NCCN®) hosted its Patient Advocacy Summit: Value in Cancer Care – Patient Perspectives, at the National Press Club in Washington, DC.

The patient advocacy summit was held in response to a variety of issues associated with the value in cancer care. Access to appropriate cancer care is of vital importance to all patients with cancer and their families.  The inability to obtain the right cancer care in a timely manner can have devastating results—medically, psychologically and financially. It is therefore critical that patients have access to provider networks that include oncologists and cancer centers, and that these are located in reasonable proximity to the patient. However, to help control costs, many plans limit access to the kinds of specialists cancer patients need; this can have an adverse effect on cancer patients and their caregivers.

The rising cost of cancer care is creating a huge burden on patients and on the US healthcare system as a whole. Cancer care is expensive and the related expense continues to rise faster than the overall rate of healthcare expenditures in the United States—over 15% annually vs. 3%. Innovation, which leads to new diagnostics and treatments in oncology and ultimately to improved outcomes, also comes at a cost. Drug prices, in particular, are escalating at an exponential pace. Some reasons cited for high drug prices are the high cost of cancer drug development, targeted therapy for smaller patient cohorts, the higher prices patients and society seem willing to pay, and the failure to take economic considerations into account in the drug approval and pricing processes.

While value is often an elusive concept, it is particularly so when applied to cancer care. Most simply, value is usually understood as the outcome when benefits exceed costs. The Institute of Medicine (IOM) defines value as “best care for lower cost”. But defining benefits and costs relative to cancer care is extremely difficult. Exactly which costs should be considered, and who determines what benefit is? In addition, the quality of the care must also be considered as a component of value.  Less expensive care does not contribute to value if the quality of care is insufficient.

This event provided a forum for discussion of challenges and obstacles that impact and hinder patient access to appropriate care, offered a chance for the oncology community to discuss cost and payment for medical interventions, and provided an opportunity to address how patients define value in cancer care.


Supported by Actelion Pharmaceuticals US, Inc. This activity is supported by an educational donation provided by Amgen. Supported by ApoBiologix, a Division of Apotex Corp. Supported by Astellas. Sponsored by AstraZeneca. Supported by Biodesix, Inc. Supported by BioMarin Pharmaceutical Inc. Supported by a charitable contribution from Bristol-Myers Squibb. Sponsored by Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals, Inc. Sponsored by Celgene Corporation. Supported by an unrestricted grant from Eisai, Inc. Supported by EMD Serono. Supported by a grant from Genentech, A Member of the Roche Group. Supported by Gilead Sciences, Inc. Supported by HELSINN. Supported by ImpediMed. Supported by Incyte Corporation. Supported by a grant from ImmunoGen, Inc. Supported by Janssen. This activity is supported by a contribution from Lilly. Supported by Medivation, Inc. Supported by an independent educational grant from Merck & Co., Inc. Sponsored by Novartis Oncology. Sponsored by Novartis Oncology. Supported by OncoGenex Pharmaceuticals. Supported by Onyx Pharmaceuticals, Inc., An Amgen subsidiary. Supported by Pharmacyclics LLC, An AbbVie Company. Sponsored by Sandoz, Inc. Supported by Taiho Oncology. Supported by Takeda Oncology.Supported by Teva Oncology.

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