Low-income cancer patients may spend 25% of their annual income on out-of-pocket medical costs. Of all medically associated bankruptcies, nearly 60% are due to cancer diagnoses.1
According to a new study in the American Journal of Health-System Pharmacy, chemotherapy stewardship programs may result in cost savings to both patient and health systems. As the authors outlined in their study, three actions must be taken for a chemotherapy stewardship program to be successful:
- Assess and establish the site of care for institutional chemotherapy regimens during the initial evaluation process, which reduces unnecessary variation in administration location. Designation of site-of-care also allows for the development of downstream processes to evaluate patients who fall outside of standard-of-care practices or may not be candidates for ambulatory administration due to patient-specific risk factors.
- Evaluate previous in-patient resource utilization practices to establish criteria for inpatient administration of chemotherapy and develop pathways to triage patients who do not meet those criteria.
- Implement continuous process improvement measures to further optimize inpatient administration criteria and to formally assess institutional impact.
For further details on the findings of this study, visit DrugTopics.com and read the full article.
- Ramsey S, Blough D, Kirchhoff A, et al. Washington State Cancer patients found to be at greater risk for bankruptcy than people without a cancer diagnosis. Health Aff. 2013;32(6):1143-1152.