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Pet Therapy: How the Cat I Never Wanted Saved My Life

My husband and I adopted our cat, Franklin, on a cold November day. It was one of the last days Andrew felt well enough to leave the house to go anywhere other than to chemotherapy or a doctor’s appointment. Our news at these appointments had shifted toward the negative, with disease progression...

issues in oncology

Initiate Conversations About Radiation Therapy for Bone Metastases

Although the American Society for Radiation Oncology (ASTRO) has recommended extended-fraction radiation therapy (more than 10 fractions) not be routinely used for palliation of bone metastases,1 a recently published retrospective cohort study using Medicare data for more than 12,000 patients found ...

issues in oncology

Extended-Fraction Radiation Therapy for Bone Metastases Represents Low-Value Care but Continues to Be Widely Practiced

An analysis of radiation therapy patterns among more than 12,000 Medicare patients treated for bone metastases found that 23.4% received extended-fraction radiation therapy, “wasting both health-care dollars and precious patient time,” according to the investigators.1 One-third of the treating...

issues in oncology
pain management

Opioid-Related Deaths in the Cancer Population vs the General Population

In a study reported in a research letter in JAMA Oncology, Fumiko Chino, MD, and colleagues found that while the incidence of opioid-related death has increased in both the general population and in patients with cancer in recent years, opioid-related death is far less common among individuals with ...

supportive care
pain management

The Opioid Crisis From the Oncology Perspective

As the nation battles an escalating opioid-overdose crisis, which claims more than 100 lives per day, a new study presented at the 2018 ASCO Quality Care Symposium was designed to answer a heretofore unanswered question: How common are opioid-related deaths in patients with cancer?1 Unintended...

issues in oncology
pain management
legislation

Fumiko Ladd Chino, MD, on Opioid-Associated Deaths in Patients With Cancer

Fumiko Ladd Chino, MD, of Duke University, discusses results from a population study she conducted of the opioid epidemic over the past 10 years and why these medications for cancer pain should continue to be excluded from restrictive-prescribing laws (Abstract 230).

cost of care

Patient-Reported Financial Sacrifice and Cancer Care

In a study reported in the Journal of Oncology Practice, Chino et al found that high proportions of insured patients with cancer—most with stage IV disease—reported being willing to make considerable personal and financial sacrifices to receive cancer care. The study included a...

ASCO Annual Meeting Merit Awards: This Year’s Winners

The Conquer Cancer Merit Awards support oncology trainees who are first authors on abstracts selected for presentation at an ASCO scientific meeting, including the ASCO Annual Meeting and thematic symposia. Conquer Cancer recognized 127 recipients with Merit Awards at the 2018 ASCO Annual Meeting,...

health-care policy

ASTRO 2017: Uninsured Patients With Cancer Saw Increased Coverage for Care Following Medicaid Expansion

A new study found that Medicaid expansion enacted as part of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) improved coverage for care for patients with cancer receiving radiation therapy and potentially decreased health-care disparities. Analysis of more than 197,000 patient records from one ...

cost of care

Out-of-Pocket Costs Remain High, Even for Insured Patients With Cancer

One-third of insured people with cancer end up paying more out-of-pocket than they expected, despite having health insurance coverage, researchers at the Duke Cancer Institute have found. The data showed that costs such as copays and deductibles could lead to financial distress among insured...

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