Jean McDougall, Scott D. Ramsey, and Jerald Radich
Bernardo H. L. Goulart and Scott D. Ramsey
Bernardo H. L. Goulart, Mark E. Bensink, David G. Mummy, and Scott D. Ramsey
A recent randomized trial showed that low-dose CT (LDCT) screening reduces lung cancer mortality. Health care providers need an assessment of the national budget impact and cost-effectiveness of LDCT screening before this intervention is adopted in practice. Using data from the 2009 National Health Interview Survey, CMS, and the National Lung Screening Trial (NLST), the authors performed an economic analysis of LDCT screening that includes a budget impact model, an estimate of additional costs per lung cancer death avoided attributed to screening, and a literature search of cost-effectiveness analyses of LDCT screening. They conducted a one-way sensitivity analysis, reporting expenditures in 2011 U.S. dollars, and took the health care payer and patient perspectives. LDCT screening will add $1.3 to $2.0 billion in annual national health care expenditures for screening uptake rates of 50% to 75%, respectively. However, LDCT screening will avoid up to 8100 premature lung cancer deaths at a 75% screening rate. The prevalence of smokers who qualify for screening, screening uptake rates, and cost of LDCT scan were the most influential parameters on health care expenditures. The additional cost of screening to avoid one lung cancer death is $240,000. Previous cost-effectiveness analyses have not conclusively shown that LDCT is cost-effective. LDCT screening may add substantially to the national health care expenditures. Although LDCT screening can avoid more than 8000 lung cancer deaths per year, a cost-effectiveness analysis of the NLST will be critical to determine the value of this intervention and to guide decisions about its adoption.
Kate Watabayashi, Jordan Steelquist, Karen A. Overstreet, Anthony Leahy, Erin Bradshaw, Kathleen D. Gallagher, Alan J. Balch, Rebecca Lobb, Laura Lavell, Hannah Linden, Scott D. Ramsey, and Veena Shankaran
Background: Few studies have engaged patients and caregivers in interventions to alleviate financial hardship. We collaborated with Consumer Education and Training Services (CENTS), Patient Advocate Foundation (PAF), and Family Reach (FR) to assess the feasibility of enrolling patient–caregiver dyads in a program that provides financial counseling, insurance navigation, and assistance with medical and cost of living expenses. Methods: Patients with solid tumors aged ≥18 years and their primary caregiver received a financial education video, monthly contact with a CENTS counselor and PAF case manager for 6 months, and referral to FR for help with unpaid cost of living bills (eg, transportation or housing). Patient financial hardship and caregiver burden were measured using the Comprehensive Score for Financial Toxicity–Patient-Reported Outcomes (COST-PRO) and Caregiver Strain Index (CSI) measures, respectively, at baseline and follow-up. Results: Thirty patients (median age, 59.5 years; 40% commercially insured) and 18 caregivers (67% spouses) consented (78% dyad participation rate). Many participants faced cancer-related financial hardships prior to enrollment, such as work change or loss (45% of patients; 39% of caregivers) and debt (64% of patients); 39% of caregivers reported high levels of financial burden at enrollment. Subjects received $11,000 in assistance (mean, $772 per household); 66% of subjects with income ≤$50,000 received cost-of-living assistance. COST-PRO and CSI scores did not change significantly. Conclusions: Patient–caregiver dyads were willing to participate in a financial navigation program that addresses various financial issues, particularly cost of living expenses in lower income participants. Future work should address financial concerns at diagnosis and determine whether doing so improves patient and caregiver outcomes.
Randy C. Miles, Christoph I. Lee, Qin Sun, Aasthaa Bansal, Gary H. Lyman, Jennifer M. Specht, Catherine R. Fedorenko, Mikael Anne Greenwood-Hickman, Scott D. Ramsey, and Janie M. Lee
Background: The purpose of this study was to assess advanced imaging (bone scan, CT, or PET/CT) and serum tumor biomarker use in asymptomatic breast cancer survivors during the surveillance period. Patients and Methods: Cancer registry records for 2,923 women diagnosed with primary breast cancer in Washington State between January 1, 2007, and December 31, 2014, were linked with claims data from 2 regional commercial insurance plans. Clinical data including demographic and tumor characteristics were collected. Evaluation and management codes from claims data were used to determine advanced imaging and serum tumor biomarker testing during the peridiagnostic and surveillance phases of care. Multivariable logistic regression models were used to identify clinical factors and patterns of peridiagnostic imaging and biomarker testing associated with surveillance advanced imaging. Results: Of 2,923 eligible women, 16.5% (n=480) underwent surveillance advanced imaging and 31.8% (n=930) received surveillance serum tumor biomarker testing. Compared with women diagnosed before the launch of the Choosing Wisely campaign in 2012, later diagnosis was associated with lower use of surveillance advanced imaging (odds ratio [OR], 0.68; 95% CI, 0.52–0.89). Factors significantly associated with use of surveillance advanced imaging included increasing disease stage (stage III: OR, 3.65; 95% CI, 2.48–5.38), peridiagnostic advanced imaging use (OR, 1.76; 95% CI, 1.33–2.31), and peridiagnostic serum tumor biomarker testing (OR, 1.35; 95% CI, 1.01–1.80). Conclusions: Although use of surveillance advanced imaging in asymptomatic breast cancer survivors has declined since the launch of the Choosing Wisely campaign, frequent use of surveillance serum tumor biomarker testing remains prevalent, representing a potential target for further efforts to reduce low-value practices.