The 2015 Trends in Cancer Programs survey is year six of an ongoing survey of ACCC-member cancer programs, designed to educate on nationwide developments in the business aspects of cancer care. The survey is also a tool to assist members in evaluating their own organization's performance relative to similar cancer programs.
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While provision of patient-centered services continues to grow, cancer programs report their number one challenge was "lack of reimbursement for supportive care services." The majority of respondent report offering nurse navigation (89%), psychological counseling (88%), survivorship care (87%), and palliative care (87%). Expansion of these services may have contributed to the 61% of respondents who cited "budget restrictions" as their second biggest challenge.
More programs report using metrics to measure and track quality to show payers the value of care provided. Nearly all respondents communicate value to payers through a variety of metrics, including Commission on Cancer accreditation (87%), The Joint Commission accreditation (74%), Press Ganey scores (57%), reporting data on quality initiatives (52%), NAPBC accreditation (51%), and benchmarking patient outcomes against other programs (51%).
Financial toxicity continues to have a negative impact on cancer patients. With implementation of the Affordable Care Act, the number of uninsured patients continues to decline; however, more than half of cancer programs (54%) report an increase in the number of under-insured patients. At the same time, nearly half of respondents (44%) identified the increased number of patients unable to afford treatment as one of their "biggest challenges."
More cancer programs are implementing quality and compliance initiatives related to oral anticancer drugs. The 2015 survey finds that 53% of respondents now offer these programs, up from 34% in the 2014 survey. Nearly all respondents (94%) say they teach/educate patients about issues related to oral medications, and 77% proactively reach out to patients to ensure compliance.
Despite increased focus on providing patient-centered care, programs continue to report challenges in meeting the CoC patient-centered standards that went into effect in 2015. About half of programs (51%) are concerned about meeting Standard 3.3 Survivorship Care, while 41% of programs are concerned about meeting Standard 1.9 Clinical Trial Accrual.
If you have any questions about the survey, please contact Provider Resources.
The survey is a joint project between ACCC and Lilly Oncology.