BURLINGTON, Mass.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Decision Resources, one of the world’s leading research and advisory firms for pharmaceutical and healthcare issues, finds that, surveyed U.S. oncologists and managed care organization (MCO) pharmacy directors indicate that clinical pathway programs will grow substantially in their influence over the next year. Twenty-four percent of surveyed oncologists said that they currently take part in a clinical pathways program, while 49 percent expect to do so in the next 12 months.
“The adoption of clinical pathways could streamline care but threatens those branded therapies that do not obtain permitted use on the pathway”
The new U.S. Physician & Payer Forum report entitled Impact of Payer-Imposed Strategies on Market Access in Oncology: Clinical Pathways, Accountable Care Organization Contracting, Specialty Pharmacy, and the Evolution of the Buy and Bill Model also finds that breast cancer, colorectal cancer (CRC) and non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC) appear to be the current priorities for pathways programs. Nearly all surveyed oncologists currently engaged in a clinical pathways program participate in a breast cancer program, with slightly fewer saying their program covers CRC, NSCLC and prostate cancer.
Surveyed oncologists are divided concerning the impact of clinical pathways on drug choice as 34 percent say they prescribe a narrower range of drugs, while almost as many point to a wider possible range of drugs when clinicians’ preferred drugs differ from pathway-permitted agents.
The report also finds that 21 percent of surveyed MCO pharmacy directors said they have a pathways program while 37 percent expect to do so in the next 12 months. Surveyed pharmacy directors point to cost savings and improving patient care as the key drivers for implementing clinical pathway programs for breast cancer.
"The adoption of clinical pathways could streamline care but threatens those branded therapies that do not obtain permitted use on the pathway,” said Decision Resources Decision Resources’ Product Manager Roy Moore. “As these pathways are developed, stakeholders believe the drug industry can be a partner, particularly around data on their therapies' costs and efficacy versus competitors.”
The report also finds that oncologists who use specialty pharmacy are split in their top reason for doing so as 37 percent cite greater convenience, while 35 percent point to limitation of financial risk. Notably, less than a fifth said their top reason for using specialty pharmacy was MCO mandates, suggesting that physicians are more driven to use specialty pharmacy because of the benefit it provides them.
In addition, the role of Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs) is expected to expand in oncology in the next year, the report finds. Whereas ACOs are commonly identified with common chronic conditions such as diabetes, responses from oncologists and pharmacy directors show that this reimbursement strategy is poised to quickly expand into cancer indications.
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