Drug companies provide so much of the funding for major patient groups that many critics say they've stifled a key voice in the policy debate over soaring drug prices, especially over those for cancer.--Jayne O'Donnell , USA TODAY
An important resource for adverse event data--FDA Adverse Event Reporting System is publically available although there can be a high degree of complexity. Head over to data talks, people mumble for data focused blogs of interest. If you prefer step by step guidance I will include a few case studies in Blueprint: a scalable healthcare data strategy available for pre-order ($2.99) for e-book but here I will keep it a little more high level to keep more eyeballs following along.
A quick summary of what you need to know about data quality so when reviewing published manuscripts you are able to reach your own determinations:
Embargo/Online Publication Date: 00:01 AM ET, Monday, October 10, 2016
[05.01 Hours UK Time (BST)/14:01 Hours Australian Eastern Standard Time (AEST), October 10]
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Costs of Similarly Effective Breast Cancer Treatments Vary Widely
A new study finds that the costs of breast cancer chemotherapy vary widely, even among treatment regimens with similar efficacy, and that patients bear a substantial out-of-pocket burden. Published early online in CANCER, a peer-reviewed journal of the American Cancer Society, the study is the first to examine these cost differences, providing clinicians with accessible information to answer patient questions about their treatment options.
To estimate the costs to payers and patients for breast cancer treatment regimens, Sharon Giordano, MD, MPH, of The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, and her colleagues assessed information on 14,643 women who were diagnosed with breast cancer between 2008 and 2012 and who received chemotherapy within three months of diagnosis. Total and out-of-pocket costs were calculated using all claims within 18 months of diagnosis and were normalized to 2013 dollars.
Among the major findings:
- Among patients who did and did not receive trastuzumab, which targets the HER2 protein that is over-expressed in certain types of breast cancer cells, the median insurance payments were $160,590 and $82,260,respectively.
- For patients who did not receive trastuzumab, the median out-of-pocket payment was $2724 and 10 percent of patients paid more than $7041.
- For patients treated with trastuzumab, the median out-of-pocket payment was $3381 and 10 percent paid more than $8384.
- Among patients on high deductible health plans, the median out-of-pocket cost was $5158 and 10 percent of patients paid $11,344 or more.
There are a wide-variety of care costs likely to occur outside of the short window being evaluated such as breast reconstruction or ongoing care regimens.
An advantage of alternative data sources such as registries provide inclusion of cancer stage, ethnicity, or tumor characteristics.
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