The Lynx Group
Association for Value-Based Care

Cancer Research, Investigational Studies Perspective

Conference Correspondent

During the November 10 session of the Association for Value-Based Cancer Care (AVBCC) 10th Annual Summit, James Hamrick, MD, MPH, Senior Medical Director of Clinical Oncology at Flatiron Health, moderated a panel of experts who took a deep dive into the topic of chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T-cell therapies and the current landscape of clinical trials.

Ibrahim El-Houssieny, MD, Vice President and Global Head of Oncology and Cell Therapy Medical Affairs at Gilead Sciences, began the discussion by providing a brief history of CAR T-cell therapies. Research conducted on the natural immune response of the body led to harnessing of the patient’s immune cells to target cancer cells. Unlike other anti-cancer therapies, CAR T-cell therapy is a one-time treatment. Therefore, it is important to balance benefit with cost, noted Dr El-Houssieny.

Blase Polite, MD, MPP, FASCO, Associate Professor of Medicine at the University of Chicago, who offered a manufacturing perspective, noted that a lot of investment goes into oncology therapies. As a result, it is imperative to determine the return on investment. From a healthcare system perspective, the hope is to transfer risk down to the provider level.

A payer perspective was provided by Roger Brito, DO, Division Head of Enterprise Oncology at CVS Health. Dr Brito said that the healthcare industry always tries to deliver value but has not always been successful in oncology. Therefore, pharmaceutical companies and manufacturers need to play a larger role and get more involved in this process.

Maurie Markman, MD, President of Medicine and Science and Chief Clinical Officer at Cancer Treatment Centers of America, expressed concerns that innovative therapies will not be affordable for many patients with cancer.

Björn Albrecht, PhD, Partner at McKinsey & Company, agreed with Dr Markman. Dr Albrecht said that he has worked with health systems that are willing to take a long-term approach and work on a population basis. He believes that innovation should continue to receive support, but it is important to avoid a tiering system where only certain patients get access to the therapies they need.

Other topics of discussion in this session included outcomes-based pricing, the Oncology Care Model, and drug costs.

It’s not too late to register for the AVBCC Summit! By registering, you can gain access to these in-depth, expert views on the future of value in oncology practices.

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