Oncology Value Highlighted at Expert Panel During ASCO Annual Meeting

ASCO 2018 will be remembered for the potential paradigm changing innovations across hematologic and solid tumor diseases, but there was a critical discussion also taking place around the tremendous value these advances are offering patients.

On Friday, June 1, Celgene presented a workshop entitled “Understanding the Value of Innovation in Oncology” that looked at what value means to different stakeholders, including patients, physicians and health economists on a series of panels throughout the day.

The first session featured Dr. Rafael Fonseca of the Mayo Clinic and Dr. Anupam Jena of Harvard Medical School who spoke about why measuring value matters in oncology during this current era of increasing costs. The doctors discussed the concept of healthcare as an investment and the inherent value that research and innovative therapies are providing for patients with cancer.

Dr. Fonseca

Dr. Jena then brought Dr. Peter Neumann of Tufts University School of Medicine, Dr. John Romley of the University of Southern California, and Dr. Jason Shafrin of the Innovation and Value Initiative to talk about how we currently measure value and why context matters in these assessments. The group also discussed new approaches to measuring value including a new open-source, consensus-based approach to measure the benefits, risks, and costs involved in assigning value.

Importantly, the patient voice was well-represented during the event as Jennifer Hinkel, a patient and Partner at McGivney Global Advisors, hosted a second panel that explored what patients believe are important aspects of innovative therapies. Dr. Michael Millenson of Health Quality Advisors, Sarah Krüg, CEO of Cancer101 and patient Stuart Cornew explored the many considerations that contribute to a therapy’s profile such as clinical benefit, survival, toxicity, novelty, and quality of life, and how those factors contribute to value.

Finally, after Dr. Fonseca grounded the group in physicians’ considerations around value, he hosted a panel including Jennifer Hinkel, Dr. Jena and Dr. Neuman that looked toward the future at how different audiences can be engaged in discussions around value and how the community can overcome challenges and limitations of current approaches.

“This event was a true opportunity to hear from some of the most important voices in any discussion about value,” said Dr. Safiya Abouzaid, host of the workshop from Celgene Corporation. “By understanding what value means for each stakeholder- how it is currently assessed and how we can reflect different perspectives in that assessment- we can ensure a continuation of the kind of innovation that has improved the lives of many patients over recent years.”

Dr. Jena