Switching to newest HPV vaccine can save billions in health care costs, study says

first_img Newsletters Sign up for Morning Rounds Your daily dose of news in health and medicine. PharmalotSwitching to newest HPV vaccine can save billions in health care costs, study says Gardasil, an HPV vaccine manufactured by Merck. Harry Cabluck/AP By Ed Silverman April 18, 2016 Reprints The study also found that targeting increased use of the vaccine in states where vaccination rates are currently lowest would provide the greatest health gains. The cost of the newer Gardasil, which is made by Merck, is approximately $126 per dose for a three-dose regiment, roughly $13 more than the older version and $18 more than another vaccine called Cervarix.Durham explained that there may be barriers, at least for now, to widespread adoption of the newest Gardasil vaccine. For instance, he noted that the higher cost may seem minimal on a per dose basis, but there may be concern that the added expense can add up over the long run. Moreover, some physicians and government health agencies may have stockpiled large amounts of the older, cheaper vaccines.advertisement About the Author Reprints Pharmalot Columnist, Senior Writer Ed covers the pharmaceutical industry. @Pharmalot Leave this field empty if you’re human: At the same time, Gardasil has been plagued by broader safety concerns that have plagued many vaccines. Specifically, some families have complained that the vaccine caused chronic pain or dizziness. Last year, however, the European Medicines Agency conducted an extensive review and found there was no link, and no change was needed to vaccination.We asked SaneVax, an advocacy group that has maintained Gardasil safety is questionable, for comment about the study findings and will update you accordingly. Please enter a valid email address.center_img HPV vaccine doesn’t cause chronic pain or dizziness, review finds By switching to the latest version of the Gardasil vaccine, which can thwart a virus that leads to cervical cancer, the nation’s health care bill could drop by an estimated $2.7 billion over the next 35 years, according to a new study published on Monday.How so? The newer vaccine is expected to lower the incidence of cervical cancer and death. The current vaccines used to tackle the human papillomavirus reduce the onset of cervical cancer by 63 percent and deaths by 43 percent. But by using Gardasil 9, as the newest version is called, the incidence of cervical cancer would decrease by 73 percent and death by 49 percent, the analysis found.“There’s a potentially large societal cost that can be lowered over time” by using the newest version, said David Durham, an associate research scientist in epidemiology at the Yale University School of Public Health and lead author of the study, which was published by the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.advertisement Related: Privacy Policy “The main policy message is that the new vaccine is cost effective and that focusing on states with lower coverage gives you more bang for your buck,” Durham told us. We should note that Durham and another study author have done consulting work for Merck, which, of course, benefits from this comparison. (Yet another study author has consulted for, and received research funding, from GlaxoSmithKline, which sells Cervarix).The findings come amid ongoing concern among public health officials that HPV vaccination remains at unacceptably low rates. Barely 40 percent of girls between the ages of 13 and 17 received the full three-dose regimen in 2014, according to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. And for boys in the same age range, less than 22 percent were administered all three doses that year.Read the most popular stories this hourThe initial version of Gardasil was approved by regulators a decade ago for treating HPV, which is a sexually transmitted virus, in girls and women between 9 and 26 years old. The vaccine was also approved to prevent genital warts caused by some HPV strains in boys and men in the same age range. The Cervarix vaccine, by the way, is not used as widely as Gardasil.The newer Gardasil 9, which was approved by the US Food and Drug Administration in late 2014, can protect against an additional group of HPV strains. Whereas the older vaccine can combat strains that cause about 66 percent of cervical cancer cases, the newest version can thwart strains believed to be responsible for about 80 percent of such cancers.From the start, though, Gardasil has been dogged by controversy.For one thing, some parents have been concerned that vaccination may lead their teenage girls to engage in casual sexual behavior. In late 2014, however, a study found that vaccination was not associated with risky sexual behavior. And a study published in 2012 found that HPV vaccines did not lead to an increased risk of pregnancy, sexually transmitted infections, or contraceptive counseling. [email protected] Tags HPVMerckVaccines Ed Silvermanlast_img read more

Reporter’s notebook: A surge of surprising optimism around CAR-T

first_img Reporter’s notebook: A surge of surprising optimism around CAR-T About the Author Reprints By Meghana Keshavan Dec. 7, 2016 Reprints Tags biotechnologycancergeneticsSTAT+ Log In | Learn More GET STARTED Biotech Correspondent Meghana covers biotech and contributes to The Readout newsletter. Unlock this article — plus daily coverage and analysis of the biotech sector — by subscribing to STAT+. First 30 days free. GET STARTED Meghana Keshavan SAN DIEGO — I didn’t expect so much optimism about CAR-T cancer therapies at ASH, the annual American Society of Hematology meeting.We’re coming off a rough couple of months in the field; seven patients have died across three clinical trials of Juno Therapeutics’s CAR-T treatments. And we’ve heard a lot about the often-toxic side effects, starting with the cytokine storms that can overwhelm the immune system.center_img Daily reporting and analysis The most comprehensive industry coverage from a powerhouse team of reporters Subscriber-only newsletters Daily newsletters to brief you on the most important industry news of the day STAT+ Conversations Weekly opportunities to engage with our reporters and leading industry experts in live video conversations Exclusive industry events Premium access to subscriber-only networking events around the country The best reporters in the industry The most trusted and well-connected newsroom in the health care industry And much more Exclusive interviews with industry leaders, profiles, and premium tools, like our CRISPR Trackr. [email protected] Biotech STAT+ is STAT’s premium subscription service for in-depth biotech, pharma, policy, and life science coverage and analysis. Our award-winning team covers news on Wall Street, policy developments in Washington, early science breakthroughs and clinical trial results, and health care disruption in Silicon Valley and beyond. What’s included? What is it? @megkesh Victor Segura Ibarra and Rita Serda, Ph.D., NCI, NIHlast_img read more

Researchers worry about data gaps on how pot affects older adults

first_img David Sloan, who is a medical marijuana patient, exhales smoke from cannabis concentrate. Brennan Linsley/AP By Associated Press Dec. 6, 2016 Reprints About the Author Reprints Related: Related: The researchers reviewed data from the National Survey on Drug Use and Health and found a big increase in adults over 50 reporting they had used pot in the past year.About 2.8 percent of those surveyed said they had used pot a decade ago. Six years later in 2013, the rate was about 4.8 percent — a 71 percent jump.advertisement So your state just legalized marijuana: 6 things to know “Historically older people haven’t had high rates of substance use, but this is changing,” said Dr. Benjamin Han, a geriatrician at NYU who led the study published this week in the journal Addiction. “As baby boomers age, we’re going to see more and more of this.”Older adults are still much less likely than younger people to use pot. In the 2013 survey, about 19 percent of people 18 to 25 reported using marijuana in the previous month.Doctors have little to go on when treating older people who use pot, Han said.“When it comes to, for instance, alcohol, there have been a lot of studies about effects on older populations, guidelines on how much older people should be consuming,” Han said. “But when it comes to marijuana, we have nothing.” DENVER — Surveys show a small but growing number of older adults are using marijuana — a trend that worries researchers who say not enough information exists about how pot affects older users.Abundant research has been done on how the drug impacts developing brains, but little is known about the potential consequences on older users — even as recreational pot has been legalized in a number of states.Researchers at New York University say pot could pose health challenges to older users ranging from memory loss to risk of falling.advertisement HealthResearchers worry about data gaps on how pot affects older adults The study drew no conclusions about whether older pot users are using the drug as medicine or for fun.US Surgeon General Dr. Vivek Murthy said last year that marijuana can be helpful for treating certain ailments, but he added that medical marijuana research is preliminary and he called for more research.Federal drug law considers marijuana a drug with no medical use.Marijuana legalization debates center on the drug’s consequences for kids, perhaps leaving adults to think there’s no downside to using it.“Before the liberalization of marijuana policy, lots of young people used marijuana and then as they got jobs and kids and mortgages, they stopped,” said Jonathan Caulkins, a professor of public policy at Carnegie-Mellon University who was not involved in the NYU study.“It seems that as the social stigmatization has decreased, more users are continuing into adulthood.”— Kristen Wyatt Does access to medical marijuana reduce opioid deaths? Associated Presslast_img read more

Many cancer drugs approved using surrogate markers don’t improve quality of life

first_img Unlock this article — plus daily coverage and analysis of the pharma industry — by subscribing to STAT+. First 30 days free. GET STARTED Many cancer drugs approved using surrogate markers don’t improve quality of life @Pharmalot By Ed Silverman Dec. 7, 2016 Reprints About the Author Reprints [email protected] Daily reporting and analysis The most comprehensive industry coverage from a powerhouse team of reporters Subscriber-only newsletters Daily newsletters to brief you on the most important industry news of the day STAT+ Conversations Weekly opportunities to engage with our reporters and leading industry experts in live video conversations Exclusive industry events Premium access to subscriber-only networking events around the country The best reporters in the industry The most trusted and well-connected newsroom in the health care industry And much more Exclusive interviews with industry leaders, profiles, and premium tools, like our CRISPR Trackr. GET STARTED More than a dozen cancer drugs that were approved based on so-called surrogate markers, such as the ability to shrink tumors, failed to improve the quality of life for patients. Yet most of the medicines, which previously were found not to extend lives, are also expensive, with many costing much more than $100,000 annually, and all but one remain on the market, according to a new analysis.Of 18 cancer drugs approved between 2008 and 2012, only one registered an improved quality of life, and no statistically significant improvement was seen in six others compared with a placebo or an observation group. Four more showed mixed signs and two drugs actually displayed worsening patient outcomes. There was no available evidence for five medicines, according to the analysis in JAMA Internal Medicine. Gerry Broome/APcenter_img Pharmalot Columnist, Senior Writer Ed covers the pharmaceutical industry. What’s included? What is it? Ed Silverman Log In | Learn More Pharmalot STAT+ is STAT’s premium subscription service for in-depth biotech, pharma, policy, and life science coverage and analysis. Our award-winning team covers news on Wall Street, policy developments in Washington, early science breakthroughs and clinical trial results, and health care disruption in Silicon Valley and beyond. Tags cancerdrug pricespolicySTAT+last_img read more

Another pharma employee accused of insider trading

first_img About the Author Reprints Alex Hogan/STAT By Ed Silverman Feb. 8, 2017 Reprints GET STARTED [email protected] @Pharmalot What’s included? Daily reporting and analysis The most comprehensive industry coverage from a powerhouse team of reporters Subscriber-only newsletters Daily newsletters to brief you on the most important industry news of the day STAT+ Conversations Weekly opportunities to engage with our reporters and leading industry experts in live video conversations Exclusive industry events Premium access to subscriber-only networking events around the country The best reporters in the industry The most trusted and well-connected newsroom in the health care industry And much more Exclusive interviews with industry leaders, profiles, and premium tools, like our CRISPR Trackr. What is it? Pharmalot center_img Another pharma employee accused of insider trading Tags insider tradingpharmaceuticalsSTAT+ Log In | Learn More Unlock this article by subscribing to STAT+ and enjoy your first 30 days free! GET STARTED Pharmalot Columnist, Senior Writer Ed covers the pharmaceutical industry. File this under “What are friends for?”A former head of statistics at Merrimack Pharmaceuticals has been accused of insider trading as part of a scheme in which he allegedly swapped the results of ongoing clinical trials with a friend who worked at a nearby biotech company, Akebia Therapeutics. STAT+ is STAT’s premium subscription service for in-depth biotech, pharma, policy, and life science coverage and analysis. Our award-winning team covers news on Wall Street, policy developments in Washington, early science breakthroughs and clinical trial results, and health care disruption in Silicon Valley and beyond. Ed Silvermanlast_img read more

‘It’s raining needles’: Drug crisis creates pollution threat

first_img Please enter a valid email address. Health‘It’s raining needles’: Drug crisis creates pollution threat It’s unclear whether anyone has gotten sick, but the reports of children finding the needles can be sickening in their own right. One 6-year-old girl in California mistook a discarded syringe for a thermometer and put it in her mouth; she was unharmed.“I just want more awareness that this is happening,” said Nancy Holmes, whose 11-year-old daughter stepped on a needle in Santa Cruz, California, while swimming. “You would hear stories about finding needles at the beach or being poked at the beach. But you think that it wouldn’t happen to you. Sure enough.”advertisement About the Author Reprints Related: Trending Now: He has a collection of several hundred needles in a fishbowl, a prop he uses to illustrate that the problem is real and that towns must do more to combat it.“We started seeing it last year here and there. But now, it’s just raining needles everywhere we go,” said Morrison, a burly, tattooed construction worker whose Clean River Project has six boats working parts of the 117-mile (188-kilometer) river.Among the oldest tracking programs is in Santa Cruz, California, where the community group Take Back Santa Cruz has reported finding more than 14,500 needles in the county over the past 4 1/2 years. It says it has gotten reports of 12 people getting stuck, half of them children.“It’s become pretty commonplace to find them. We call it a rite of passage for a child to find their first needle,” said Gabrielle Korte, a member of the group’s needle team. “It’s very depressing. It’s infuriating. It’s just gross.”Some experts say the problem will ease only when more users get treatment and more funding is directed to treatment programs.Others are counting on needle exchange programs, now present in more than 30 states, or the creation of safe spaces to shoot up — already introduced in Canada and proposed by U.S. state and city officials from New York to Seattle. More opioids were prescribed here per person than anywhere else in the U.S. Leave this field empty if you’re human: Studies have found that needle exchange programs can reduce pollution, said Don Des Jarlais, a researcher at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai hospital in New York.But Morrison and Korte complain poor supervision at needle exchanges will simply put more syringes in the hands of people who may not dispose of them properly.After complaints of discarded needles, Santa Cruz County took over its exchange from a nonprofit in 2013 and implemented changes. It did away with mobile exchanges and stopped allowing drug users to get needles without turning in an equal number of used ones, said Jason Hoppin, a spokesman for the Santa Cruz County.Along the Merrimack, nearly three dozen riverfront towns are debating how to stem the flow of needles. Two regional planning commissions are drafting a request for proposals for a cleanup plan. They hope to have it ready by the end of July.“We are all trying to get a grip on the problem,” said Haverhill Mayor James Fiorentini. “The stuff comes from somewhere. If we can work together to stop it at the source, I am all for it.”— Michael Casey By Associated Press July 17, 2017 Reprintscenter_img “We would certainly characterize this as a health hazard,” said Tim Soucy, health director in Manchester, New Hampshire’s largest city, which collected 570 needles in 2016, the first year it began tracking the problem. It has found 247 needles so far this year.Needles turn up in places like parks, baseball diamonds, trails and beaches — isolated spots where drug users can gather and attract little attention, and often the same spots used by the public for recreation. The needles are tossed out of carelessness or the fear of being prosecuted for possessing them.One child was poked by a needle left on the grounds of a Utah elementary school. Another youngster stepped on one while playing on a beach in New Hampshire.Even if adults or children don’t get sick, they still must endure an unsettling battery of tests to make sure they didn’t catch anything. The girl who put a syringe in her mouth was not poked but had to be tested for hepatitis B and C, her mother said.Some community advocates are trying to sweep up the pollution.Rocky Morrison leads a cleanup effort along the Merrimack River, which winds through the old milling city of Lowell, and has recovered hundreds of needles in abandoned homeless camps that dot the banks, as well as in piles of debris that collect in floating booms he recently started setting. Comparing the Covid-19 vaccines developed by Pfizer, Moderna, and Johnson & Johnson Newsletters Sign up for Morning Rounds Your daily dose of news in health and medicine. Associated Press LOWELL, Mass. — They hide in weeds along hiking trails and in playground grass. They wash into rivers and float downstream to land on beaches. They pepper baseball dugouts, sidewalks and streets. Syringes left by drug users amid the heroin crisis are turning up everywhere.In Portland, Maine, officials have collected more than 700 needles so far this year, putting them on track to handily exceed the nearly 900 gathered in all of 2016. In March alone, San Francisco collected more than 13,000 syringes, compared with only about 2,900 the same month in 2016.People, often children, risk getting stuck by discarded needles, raising the prospect they could contract blood-borne diseases such as hepatitis or HIV or be exposed to remnants of heroin or other drugs.advertisement They are a growing problem in New Hampshire and Massachusetts — two states that have seen many overdose deaths in recent years. Privacy Policy Activist Rocky Morrison of the Clean River Project holds up a fish bowl filled with hypodermic needles that were recovered on the Merrimack River in Methuen, Mass. Charles Krupa/APlast_img read more

Mohawks argue Allergan patent deal doesn’t deserve Senate scrutiny

first_img Ed Silverman Mohawks argue Allergan patent deal doesn’t deserve Senate scrutiny Win McNamee/Getty Images What is it? [email protected] Log In | Learn More STAT+ is STAT’s premium subscription service for in-depth biotech, pharma, policy, and life science coverage and analysis. Our award-winning team covers news on Wall Street, policy developments in Washington, early science breakthroughs and clinical trial results, and health care disruption in Silicon Valley and beyond. About the Author Reprints @Pharmalot Pharmalot Columnist, Senior Writer Ed covers the pharmaceutical industry.center_img Hoping to forestall a congressional probe, the St. Regis Mohawk Tribe sent an angry letter to the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee complaining that criticism of its controversial deal to obtain valuable patents from Allergan (AGN) is misguided, inaccurate, and unfair. Several lawmakers have denounced the deal as a cynical maneuver designed to thwart competition from lower-cost generic medicines.In arguing against an inquiry, the tribal leaders wrote the committee that the federal government “should not force Indian Country to bear the consequences of partisan disagreements about how to control drug prices and deliver affordable healthcare.” And they insisted the government should fix pollution problems harming the tribe, rather than scrutinize a deal that provides needed revenue. By Ed Silverman Oct. 13, 2017 Reprints Unlock this article — plus daily coverage and analysis of the pharma industry — by subscribing to STAT+. First 30 days free. GET STARTED GET STARTED What’s included? Daily reporting and analysis The most comprehensive industry coverage from a powerhouse team of reporters Subscriber-only newsletters Daily newsletters to brief you on the most important industry news of the day STAT+ Conversations Weekly opportunities to engage with our reporters and leading industry experts in live video conversations Exclusive industry events Premium access to subscriber-only networking events around the country The best reporters in the industry The most trusted and well-connected newsroom in the health care industry And much more Exclusive interviews with industry leaders, profiles, and premium tools, like our CRISPR Trackr. Pharmalot Tags legalpharmaceuticalsSTAT+last_img read more

‘Extraordinary’ tale: Stem cells heal a young boy’s lethal skin disease

first_img Newsletters Sign up for Daily Recap A roundup of STAT’s top stories of the day. Privacy Policy Colonies of skin cells generated from the patient’s skin. Sergio Bondanza and Francesca La Mantia/CMR Unimore The complications of the little boy’s genetic skin disease grew as he did. Tiny blisters had covered his back as a newborn. Then came the chronic skin wounds that extended from his buttocks down to his legs.By June 2015, at age 7, the boy had lost nearly two-thirds of his skin due to an infection related to the genetic disorder junctional epidermolysis bullosa, which causes the skin to become extremely fragile. There’s no cure for the disease, and it is often fatal for kids. At the burn unit at Children’s Hospital in Bochum, Germany, doctors offered him constant morphine and bandaged much of his body, but nothing — not even his father’s offer to donate his skin — worked to heal his wounds.“We were absolutely sure we could do nothing for this kid,” Dr. Tobias Rothoeft, a pediatrician with Children’s Hospital in Bochum, which is affiliated with Ruhr University. “[We thought] that he would die.”advertisement The researchers said the aggressive treatment outlined in the study — necessary in the case of the 7-year-old patient — could eventually help other patients in less critical condition. One possibility, they noted in the paper, was to “bank” skin samples from infants with JEB before they develop symptoms. These could then be used to treat skin lesions as they develop rather than after they become life-threatening.“The treatment might be more effective in children, whose stem cells have higher renewal potential and who have less total skin to replace, than in adults,” Mariaceleste Aragona and Cédric Blanpain, stem cell researchers with the Free University of Brussels, wrote in an accompanying commentary for Nature.But De Luca said more research must be conducted to see if the methods could be applied beyond this specific genetic disease. His group is currently running a pair of clinical trials in Austria using genetically modified skin stem cells to treat another 12 patients with two different kinds of epidermolysis bullosa, including JEB.For the 7-year-old boy, life has become more normal now that it ever was before, the researchers said. He’s off pain meds. While he has some small blisters in areas that didn’t receive a transplant, they haven’t stopped him from going to school, playing soccer, or behaving like a healthy child.“The kid is doing quite well. If he gets bruises like small kids [do], they just heal as normal skin heals,” Rothoeft said. “He’s quite healthy.” In the Lab‘Extraordinary’ tale: Stem cells heal a young boy’s lethal skin disease Q&A: Turning to stem cells to restore vision By Max Blau Nov. 8, 2017 Reprints Please enter a valid email address. Leave this field empty if you’re human: A rapid recoveryTo cultivate replacement skin, the medical team took a biopsy the size of a matchbook from the boy’s healthy skin and sent it to De Luca’s team in Italy. There, researchers cloned the skin cells and genetically modified them to have a healthy version of the gene LAMB3, responsible for making the protein laminin-332. They grew the corrected cultures into sheets, which they sent back to Germany. Then, over a series of three operations between October 2015 and January 2016, the surgical team attached the sheets on different parts of the boy’s body.The gene-repaired skin took, and spread. Within just a month the wounds were islands within intact skin. The boy was sent home from the hospital in February 2016, and over the next 21 months, researchers said his skin healed normally. Unlike burn patients — whose skin grafts aren’t created from genetically modified cells — the boy won’t need ointment for his skin and can regrow his hair.A sheet of cultured skin cells derived from the patient’s own skin. CMR UnimoreAnd unlike simple grafts of skin from one body part to another, “we had the opportunity to reproduce as much as those cells as we want,” said plastic surgeon Dr. Tobias Hirsch, one of the study’s authors. “You can have double the whole body surface or even more. That’s a fantastic option for a surgeon to treat this child.”Dr. John Wagner, the director of the University of Minnesota Masonic Children’s Hospital’s blood and marrow transplant program, told STAT the findings have “extraordinary” potential because, until now, the only stem cell transplants proven to work in humans was of hematopoietic stem cells — those in blood and bone marrow.“They’ve proven that a stem cell is engraftable,” Wagner said. “In humans, what we have to demonstrate is that a parent cell is able to reproduce or self-renew, and differentiate into certain cell populations for that particular organ. This is the first indication that there’s another stem cell population [beyond hematopoietic stem cells] that’s able to do that.” Related: As a last-ditch effort, the boy’s father asked if there were any available experimental treatments. The German doctors reached out to Dr. Michele De Luca, an Italian stem cell expert who heads the Center for Regenerative Medicine at the University of Modena and Reggio Emilia, to see if a transplant of genetically modified skin cells might be possible. De Luca knew the odds were against them — such a transplant had only been performed twice in the past, and never on such a large portion of the body. But he said yes.The doctors were ultimately able to reconstruct fully functional skin for 80 percent of the boy’s body by grafting on genetically modified cells taken from the boy’s healthy skin. The researchers say the results of this single-person clinical trial, published on Wednesday in Nature, show that transgenic stem cells can regenerate an entire tissue. De Luca told reporters the procedure not only offers hope to the 500,000 epidermolysis bullosa patients worldwide — but also could offer a blueprint for using genetically modified stem cells to treat a variety of other diseases.advertisement Tags patientsresearchlast_img read more

Pharmalittle: Oregon has a new transparency law; former Glaxo CEO will now run a PBM

first_img Unlock this article by subscribing to STAT+ and enjoy your first 30 days free! GET STARTED [email protected] Hello, everyone, and how are you this fine, sunny morning? The middle of the week has arrived, as you may know, so why not celebrate with a delicious cup of stimulation? After all, you made is this far, which is a likely sign of surviving another few days. And of course, no prescription is required, which is a good thing. And while you drink up, you can peruse some of the tidbits we have assembled to help you start the day. Hope you conquer the world and, as always, do keep in touch …Oregon is the latest state to demand transparency from drug makers, the Washington Examiner notes. Oregon Gov. Kate Brown signed a bill into law that requires drug makers to report the reasons for price increases in their medicines. The companies will have to inform the state when they plan to hike the price of medicines by 10 percent or more, or if the price reaches $100 or more for a one-month supply. The law also requires Oregon’s consumer services department officials to publicly post the list of drugs that face increases and hold public meetings each year about drugs prices. About the Author Reprints Pharmalot Columnist, Senior Writer Ed covers the pharmaceutical industry. What is it? Alex Hogan/STAT @Pharmalot STAT+ is STAT’s premium subscription service for in-depth biotech, pharma, policy, and life science coverage and analysis. Our award-winning team covers news on Wall Street, policy developments in Washington, early science breakthroughs and clinical trial results, and health care disruption in Silicon Valley and beyond. Pharmalot center_img Daily reporting and analysis The most comprehensive industry coverage from a powerhouse team of reporters Subscriber-only newsletters Daily newsletters to brief you on the most important industry news of the day STAT+ Conversations Weekly opportunities to engage with our reporters and leading industry experts in live video conversations Exclusive industry events Premium access to subscriber-only networking events around the country The best reporters in the industry The most trusted and well-connected newsroom in the health care industry And much more Exclusive interviews with industry leaders, profiles, and premium tools, like our CRISPR Trackr. What’s included? GET STARTED Ed Silverman Log In | Learn More Pharmalittle: Oregon has a new transparency law; former Glaxo CEO will now run a PBM Tags cancerpharmaceuticalspharmalittlepolicySTAT+ By Ed Silverman March 14, 2018 Reprintslast_img read more

Transparency on quality and price will transform medicine

first_imgFirst OpinionTransparency on quality and price will transform medicine Leave this field empty if you’re human: Open communication may also lead to fewer tests and less invasive therapies by giving clinicians an incentive to guide their patients toward more value-based decisions, including referrals to both primary care clinicians and subspecialists known for higher-quality and more efficient care. As patients and clinicians take the price of care into consideration, we expect that clinicians will soon be paid specifically for addressing a range of options with their patients.We also believe that everyone’s medical records will soon reside in the cloud, combining data from wherever care is delivered as well as from patients themselves on an individual, dynamic, constantly evolving personal dashboard that renders obsolete both the traditional medical record and today’s institution-based electronic patient portals.In the late 1960s, the original ”Star Trek” series envisioned the “medical tricorder” that could instantly read an individual’s vitals; a working prototype was recently unveiled. In the film “2001: A Space Odyssey,” people used tablets to help them keep up with the news, much like they do now with iPads. Mr. J’s experience may seem like science fiction today, but in remarkably short order we expect it will become everyday reality.Suzanne Delbanco, Ph.D., is the executive director of Catalyst for Payment Reform in Berkeley, Calif. Tom Delbanco, M.D., is professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School and Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston and a cofounder of OpenNotes. Transparency is becoming a fashionable buzzword in many walks of life. In health care, it is rearranging the relationships between patients and those who care for them. Looking at health care from different vantage points, we believe that transparent interactions among patients, clinicians, and payers hold considerable promise for improving the quality of health care and containing costs. Here’s our vision for how health care may soon evolve.Mr. J is 64 years old. The arthritic pain in his knees, and the limitations it is causing, is becoming unbearable. On his laptop, he reviews his personal health record. It contains the notes and plans that he and his primary care doctor developed during and after his recent visits. Turning to his smartphone, he dictates into his Health app a brief update on his medical history, focusing on his current symptoms. Along with his most pressing questions, he forwards the report to his doctor. At their next appointment, she examines him and they discuss his options. The next day, Mr. J opens his Health app and looks over his doctor’s draft of the visit note. It combines the narrative that he had sent her earlier with her assessment and suggested plan. He and his doctor agree that knee replacement is probably his best option.After reviewing patient-generated ratings of orthopedic surgeons on his insurer’s website, Mr. J evaluates the health care value rankings (six quality measures and estimated out-of-pocket costs) for the two orthopedic surgeons he decided to consult. He examines their track records for quality and cost, their teams, and the settings in which they operate. He examines their relationships with device companies and the various facilities in which they operate, searching for financial incentives that may influence their practices.advertisement @myopennotes Health care is headed in that direction, but it has a lot of catching up to do. Just 20 years ago, practically no information about the quality of health care providers was available, and just seven years ago it was almost impossible to find prices for something like knee replacement surgery before seeking care.Here are a few indicators that greater transparency is on the horizon:Six U.S. senators have announced a bipartisan effort to increase the transparency of health care information and prices.The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services have launched the MyHealthEData initiative to diminish “information blocking” and broaden patients’ access to their electronic health records.The commonwealth of Massachusetts has once again signaled the imminent arrival of one-stop shopping for consumers who want to know the price of a common medical test or procedure.Health insurance companies, employers, and entrepreneurs are also working aggressively to make health information transparent. All in all, we expect medical consumers will soon be far better equipped to figure out their own “best buys.”Internet-based portals already enable millions of people to review their test and laboratory results and send secure email messages to their health care teams. Spurred on by the rapidly spreading OpenNotes movement, all across the country doctors, nurses, and a growing number of psychotherapists are now inviting more than 20 million patients to review and even contribute to what they write in their patients’ medical records. Patients and families helped by such fully transparent electronic records describe improved communication, a greater sense of control, better adherence to treatment plans, and shared decisions that lead to more trust. Some will say this scenario is far-fetched. But as we wrote recently in the Annals of Internal Medicine, we think it is on the verge of becoming reality. Mr. J’s experiences mirror how people go online and make decisions today. They seek, review, and evaluate information aggregated from multiple sources; retail and service industries live or die by their judgments.advertisement Privacy Policy The original ”Star Trek” series envisioned the “medical tricorder,” like the one above, that could instantly read an individual’s vitals; a working prototype was recently unveiled. Bruno Vincent/Getty Images By Suzanne Delbanco and Tom Delbanco May 9, 2018 Reprints Newsletters Sign up for First Opinion A weekly digest of our opinion column, with insight from industry experts. Please enter a valid email address. He decides on one of the teams and, after his surgery, chronicles in his secure medical record both his care and his evolving functional status, information that automatically populates patient-reported outcomes metrics that hold the surgeon and the hospital accountable. About the Authors Reprints Tom Delbanco Suzanne Delbanco Patients would like their data, please. Will the medical device industry listen? @CPR4healthcare [email protected] Related: [email protected] Tags medical technologypatientslast_img read more