Oncology Clinical Pathways Spotlight
This week in health care trends, our oncology clinical pathways spotlight includes the effects of oncology consolidation on patient access, the struggle between pathways and innovation, and finding the golden mean in attempting to measure quality.
The articles below are from our dedicated Oncology Clinical Pathways e-magazine. We’re constantly adding valuable content to this updateable magazine, so make sure to check our e-magazine frequently for new intelligence. You can follow us on Flipboard or Twitter, or just watch for the links to this and our other magazines in our regular weekly BioBlog emails. (Don’t get our emails yet? Subscribe here!)
This article, published by the Institute for Patient Access, argues that the trend of cancer care shifting from smaller centers to larger, more centralized hospitals is a trend of consolidation “to the detriment of community oncologists”. It also delves into the questions of “What’s driving this consolidation, and how is it affecting patient care?”
While advocates of clinical pathways argue that they can streamline the decision-making process for patient care and lower costs while maintaining the quality of care, some worry that “In places where bundled payments based on holistic episodes of care has taken root, these evidence-based, standardized clinical pathways may be having a negative impact on innovation and experimentation that can help those patients that fall outside of treatment methods that receive a payer stamp of approval.”
In a recent discussion, a panel of experts convened by the American Journal of Managed Care attempted to answer the question “How much is too much?” in regards to clinical pathways and guidelines. The panel noted that navigating “the juxtaposition between the “wiggle room” within guidelines and the need for precise measurement… is a huge challenge.”