Mar 7, 2014 – Cancer Costs

March 7, 2014

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Health newsfeed for Friday, March 7, 2014

ANCHOR LEAD: AS CANCER COSTS SKYROCKET, PATIENTS WANT TO BE INFORMED, ELIZABETH TRACEY REPORTS

Cancer care internationally is in crisis, with costs skyrocketing as demands for care also increase.  Now a new paper by Ronan Kelly, an oncologist at Johns Hopkins, and colleague Thomas Smith, published in Lancet Oncology, details ways to make care better.  Kelly says one way is by involving the patient much more in care decisions.

KELLY: They want to be more involved, we call it the shared decision making process.  So if a patient comes in and realizes, I have to spend X number of dollars more per month I want to be involved, because if this drug doesn’t work tremendously better than the cheaper version, I want to get the cheaper version, whereas in the past maybe because they didn’t have the higher copays and the higher deductibles they weren’t so invested in knowing what things cost but now what we do know is patients really want this information.    :27

Kelly says patients don’t want to leave their families impoverished, and being able to make such decisions reduces that worry.  At Johns Hopkins, I’m Elizabeth Tracey.

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