1. PIPC Comments on E&C Committee's 21st Century Cure's Initiative, click here to view the comments, click here to view the comments, and here to learn more about the 21st Century Cures Initiative.
2. In the News: Paying for Value, see details below.
3. The Wall Street Journal: The Health-Care Industry Is Pushing Patients to Help Themselves, click here to view (subscription required).
4. Blog: How PCORI is Advancing Men's Health, click here to view the post.
5. Blog: The 2014 PCORI Matchmaking App Challenge: Answering Important Questions, click here to view the post.
6. Grand Forks Herald: UND Plans Health Care Analysis Unit, click here to view the article.
7. Wolters Kluwer Law & Health: New National Database Could Revolutionize Comparative Effectiveness Research, click here to view the article.
8. Albert Einstein College of Medicine: The Wisdom of the Crowd: When "Big Data" Meet Community-Based Research, click here to view the post.
9. University of Nebraska Medical Center: Life and Research in the Fast Lane, click hereto view the article.
Today, the Partnership to Improve Patient Care (PIPC) submitted comments to the House Energy and Commerce Committee on the 21st Century Cures Initiative - an project aimed at accelerating the discovery, development, and delivery of innovative treatments for many diseases that do not currently have treatment options. As health care decision-makers increasingly are adopting comparative effectiveness research (CER)-based evidence and tools, PIPC has advocated for a delivery system that supports informed patient choice from a range of treatment options and explicitly recognizes and incentivizes innovation as an element of patient-centeredness. The Partnership comments that the Committee must consider both regulatory reforms to accelerate innovation and focus on supporting a delivery system that can accommodate and provide patient access to these advances. Among the recommendations outlined in the letter:
• Explicitly align policy with innovation;
• Provide a meaningful voice to patients;
• Protect against policies that impose blunt access restrictions to medical options that are best suited to individual patients;
• Foster informed choices from the range of clinical/care options;
• Incorporate constructs that were designed with the help and expertise of the patient community;
• Ensure transparency and accountability as payment and delivery models evolve (i.e. ACOs and alternative payment models); and
• Make the conversation about innovation as broad as possible to maximize the value to patients.
Click here to view the comments, and here to learn more about the 21st Century Cures Initiative.
2. In the News: Paying for Value
This week, several articles have highlighted the value proposition of health care treatments, indicating the tension of clinical effectiveness versus cost. These articles underscore the importance of building a patient-centered evidence base and patient-centered tools for dissemination and implementation of evidence upon which patients and their providers can better assess the value of treatments based on a patient’s individual needs, outcomes and preferences. First, the American Journal of Managed Care reports, “[t]he authors propose a number of options for applying the V-BID model to specialty medications. Their first suggestion would be for plans to ‘impose no more than modest cost-sharing on high-value medications’—which entails eliminating the various tiers in an insurance plan and creating access to all necessary medical treatments. They add that ‘such an approach limits possibilities for clinically nuanced differentiation among treatments within the tiers, but promotes access to all potentially important medications.’” Click here to view the article.
The Brookings Institute in an article entitled “Changing the Way we Pay for Cancer Care” further comments, “[o]ne mechanism for ensuring that the most evidence-based treatment is used in the care of cancer patients is to use a set of ‘clinical pathways.’ These pathways are based on clinical guidelines available to the public, but tailored for a particular set of patients or a type of oncology practice. Many professional societies have contributed to these guidelines and are working on developing more advanced tools to manage a patient's care. The American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) is developing a system to rate drugs for advanced cancer based on a combination of benefit, side effects and price.” Click here to view the article.
Also, The Dallas Morning News reports “[Dr. Lee N. Newcomer, United Healthcare's vice president of oncology] said insurers are beginning to look at ‘value-based insurance’ policies requiring consumers to pay much higher amounts for treatments considered ‘low value’ and little or nothing for high-value treatments. ‘Unfortunately, we are going to have to say there are certain things that should not be covered,’ he said.” Click hereto view the article. PIPC looks forward to participating in the discussion of what value means to individual patients with unique health care needs so our system does not drive one-size fits all treatment decisions.
3. The Wall Street Journal: The Health-Care Industry Is Pushing Patients to Help Themselves
Last week, in The Wall Street Journal, Laura Landro reported, “[s]tudies show that more-engaged patients have lower costs and better health outcomes. When more engaged with care, patients and families can help prevent drastic mistakes or oversights, such as identifying a wrong drug or dose they get from the pharmacy or notifying a doctor about a strange medication side effect, according to the National Patient Safety Foundation.” Click here to view (subscription required).
4. Blog: How PCORI is Advancing Men's Health
Dr. Kara Odom Walker wrote a post for The PCORI Blog in anticipation of Fathers’ Day. “Here at PCORI, we're funding a wide variety of research projects designed to help men answer important questions about their health and health care—not just this month but all year round. A number of these projects focus on issues relating to prostate cancer diagnosis and treatment. Others address diseases that, although not restricted to men, have major implications for their health, including cardiovascular disease and lung cancer—two of the leading causes of mortality in men.” Click here to view the post.
5. Blog: The 2014 PCORI Matchmaking App Challenge: Answering Important Questions
In another post last week, Orlando Gonzales, Celeste Brown, and Emily Gagola touted the response for PCORI’s matchmaking app in The PCORI Blog. “We're very excited by the response we've seen so far to the PCORI Matchmaking App Challenge.[...]We outlined our vision for this challenge during an April 30th webinar.[...]We received many questions from webinar participants during the event and via email. We provide a full list of these questions and their answers on the webinar FAQ page. [...]But we wanted to answer two particular questions in detail here to highlight key components of this challenge.” Click here to view the post.
6. Grand Forks Herald: UND Plans Health Care Analysis Unit
Reported in the North Dakota’s local Grand Forks Herald, “[University of North Dakota] is developing a new agency that it says would help analyze the effectiveness of health care in the state. The Center for Comparative Effectiveness Analytics would start this fall if the university gets approval from the State Board of Higher Education. Documentation submitted to the committee says the center would be “an entrepreneurial model” using a partnership of academic, industry and government groups to respond to industry trends. At UND, it would reorganize faculty into new research programs and coordinate research with North Dakota State University.” Clickhere to view the article.
7. Wolters Kluwer Law & Health: New National Database Could Revolutionize Comparative Effectiveness Research
Sarah Baumann reported for Wolters Kluwer Law & Health last week about what researchers can look forward to in PCORI’s network of data. “A significant benefit of PCORNet will be its ability to provide data from ‘real-world’ settings gathered in ‘real-time.’ Dr. Francis Collins, Director of the NIH and a member of PCORI's Board of Governors, refers to the current pace of CER studies as ‘agonizingly slow,’ and notes how much more efficient it would be if researchers could access existing networks that include data for millions of patients who have already agreed to participate in research.” Click here to view the article.
8. Albert Einstein College of Medicine: The Wisdom of the Crowd: When "Big Data" Meet Community-Based Research
Writing for Albert Einstein College of Medicine’s blog last week, Paul Meissner commented on Big Data. “[T]here has been a profound shift in the goals of research itself. The research environment has moved from focusing exclusively on new discoveries to realizing the importance of translating discoveries into treatments. Known as ‘comparative effectiveness research,’ it studies how well therapies work in the real world, with all its complications and imperfections.” Click here to view the post.
9. University of Nebraska Medical Center: Life and Research in the Fast Lane
Lisa Spellman of University of Nebraska Medical Center reported about the “researcher’s IT Savior.” Big data could potentially be amazing or demoralizing, she said. “Processing data can be agonizingly slow if you're not using all the resources available to you [...] UNMC has received funding from the Patient Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI) Network to create a de-identified patient data registry for the newly created Greater Plains Consortium for Comparative Effectiveness Research.” Click here to view the article.