Navigation Links
Medicare HMO costs may prevent cancer patient clinical trial participation

PITTSBURGH, Sept. 23 Newly diagnosed cancer patients who are enrolled in Medicare's Health Maintenance Organization (HMO) plans may be unlikely to participate in clinical trials because of prohibitive costs, according to a study by the University of Pittsburgh Cancer Institute (UPCI). Under these HMO plans, covering people age 65 and older, patients are required to pay both a deductible and 20 percent of the treatment cost. As a result, access to state-of-the-art care is limited for some of society's most vulnerable members. This research will be announced during the American Society for Therapeutic Radiology and Oncology's 50th Annual Meeting in Boston.

According to Chyongchiou Lin, Ph.D., lead author of the study and associate professor of health economics in UPCI's Department of Radiation Oncology, two-thirds of cancer patients are age 65 or older, with 60 percent of new cancersand 70 percent of cancer-related deathsoccurring in this age group. At the same time, less than one-third of clinical trial enrollees fall into this age group, and patients often cite cost and insurance coverage as barriers to their participation. Because the Medicare HMO payment policy requires significant personal expense, Dr. Lin and her team believe the disparity in clinical trials representation and the payment policy are likely to be related.

"Clinical trials are the cornerstone in finding better, more effective cancer treatments," said Dr. Lin. "The National Cancer Institute (NCI) has made clinical trial participation a national priority, yet current Medicare reimbursement policies present a participation barrier for a large number of patients, cutting them off from cutting-edge treatments. The current policy should be re-examined to be consistent with NCI initiatives."

The study shows the overall proportion of newly diagnosed cancer patients who had consultations and were insured by Medicare HMOs increased from 21 percent in 2003 to 27 percent in 2007 in five hospitals participating in the UPMC McKeesport Radiation Oncology Community Outreach Program (ROCOG). ROCOG involves a consortium of hospitals in western Pennsylvania and is funded by NCI's Radiation Research Program and the Cancer Disparities Research Partnership, focusing on improving access and outcomes for underserved populations with cancer. The research team in the lead community hospital participating in the program found in 2007 that patients eligible for innovative clinical trials often opted out of enrolling in a "Medicare Qualifying" clinical trial due to the financial burden of participating.


Contact: Courtney McCrimmon
University of Pittsburgh Schools of the Health Sciences

Related medicine news :

1. Los Angeles Jury Convicts Defendant of Fraud Involving More Than $1.1 Million in False Billing to Medicare
2. Allsup's New Medicare Advisor Program Helps People with Disabilities Make Sound Healthcare Coverage Decisions
3. Miami HIV Clinic Administrator Pleads Guilty for Role in a $14 Million Medicare Fraud Scheme
4. Extra payments to Medicare Advantage plans to total $8.5 billion in 2008
5. Demystifying Medicare and Long Term Care Insurance - Healthcare Liaison Workshop 9/20 Shows Consumers How to Make Choices
6. Power Mobility Coalition Voices Concern Over Government Reports Outlining Lack of Oversight in the Medicare Durable Medical Equipment Benefit
7. Medicare Advantage Plans Struggle to Comply With New Federal Law
8. Medicare Web Site Confounds Many Seniors
9. Republican and Democratic Voters View Home Care as a Solution to Rising Medicare Spending, Harris Survey Finds
10. Senator Pat Roberts Praised for Leading Successful Effort to Derail $6.2 Million Kansas Medicare Cuts
11. Senator Susan Collins Praised for Leading Successful Effort to Derail $4.3 Million Maine Medicare Cuts
Post Your Comments:
(Date:11/28/2015)... ... 28, 2015 , ... Safe storage for contraceptive devices may not always be ... New Jersey and the other from Bradley Beach, New Jersey, there is an easy ... of having to replace NuvaRings more often than necessary. As such, it affords peace ...
(Date:11/27/2015)... ... November 28, 2015 , ... There is only one major question facing all ... year? , This question has not been an easy question to answer. Especially when ... and the younger workforce don’t share the same discipline around working long hours. ...
(Date:11/27/2015)... ... November 27, 2015 , ... ... care in America. As people age, more care is needed, especially with Alzheimer’s, ... and medical professionals are being overworked. The forgotten part of this equation: 80 ...
(Date:11/27/2015)... ... , ... Lizzie’s Lice Pickers just announced a special promotion that will run ... purchase of lice treatment product. In addition, customers will receive a complimentary head Check ... lice is a sure way to ruin the holidays, so we encourage all of ...
(Date:11/27/2015)... (PRWEB) , ... November 27, 2015 , ... ... motto of progress through sharing, the 2016 Building Better Radiology Marketing Programs ... conference will begin on Sunday, March 6, 2016, at Caesars Palace in Las ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:11/26/2015)... 26 november 2015 AAIPharma Services ... geplande investering aan van ten minste $15,8 ... en het mondiale hoofdkantoor in ... resulteren in extra kantoorruimte en extra capaciteit ... groeiende behoeften van de farmaceutische en biotechnologische ...
(Date:11/26/2015)... 26, 2015 Research and Markets ( ) ... Pacemaker Market Outlook to 2019 - Rise in Cardiac Disorders ... report to their offering. Boston ... Boston scientific and others. --> ... Biotronik, Boston scientific and others. ...
(Date:11/26/2015)... 2015 ... the  "2016 Future Horizons and Growth ... Testing Market: Supplier Shares, Competitive Intelligence, ... --> ) has ... Future Horizons and Growth Strategies in ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: