Collaboration Among Oncologists and Primary Care Providers Key to Closing the “Black Hole” in Survivorship Care
The number of cancer survivors continues to increase in the United States, which can be attributed to a growing and aging population, as well as recent advances in diagnosis and treatment. The Institute of Medicine advises that every cancer survivor receive a survivorship care plan summarizing his or her diagnosis, treatment, and recommendations regarding follow-up care.
For most patients with early-stage testicular germ cell tumors, surgery is curative and mitigates the risk for long-term toxicities associated with chemotherapy and radiation, according to results presented by Clint Cary, MD, MPH, Associate Professor, Department of Urology, Indiana University School of Medicine, Indianapolis, at the 2020 Genitourinary Cancers Symposium.
Childhood cancer therapy can be a double-edged sword; it often leads to a cure, but long after treatment ends, some survivors have treatment-related side effects.
Innovation takes time, especially when it comes to cancer research. However, delays in the adoption of novel oncology treatments can have a significant impact on patient health.
The job of the oncology medical team is to put out the fire, stop the emergency, and save the patient’s life.
Linking physicians and patients is a major undertaking, but given the ubiquity of smartphone technology and the rise in app development, the healthcare industry is poised to leverage advances in communication and information exchange.
A new paradigm of survivorship care is needed that attempts to balance the patient’s total well-being against the often toxic treatment of the disease, suggests Deborah Korenstein, MD, Director of Clinical Effectiveness, Memorial Hospital, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, NY
Cancer survivors with chronic diseases are falling through the cracks, said Sarah Scarpace, PharmD, MPH, BCOP, at the 11th annual Hematology/Oncology Pharmacy Association conference. When oncologists are no longer managing chronic diseases like diabetes and hypertension, a window of opportunity exists for pharmacists to become involved in multidisciplinary cancer survivorship team models.
There is a lack of guidelines when it comes to standard of care for adult cancer survivors, and it is time to start thinking about establishing such guidelines, according to nurse practitioner Richard Boyajian, who is Clinical Director of Adult Survivorship at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Boston, Massachusetts. He said establishing appropriate guidelines could potentially reduce morbidity and mortality.
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