The recent annual meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncology brings together more than 30,000 oncology professionals from around the world to discuss new innovations and treatments. ASCO’s Plenary Session highlighted four abstracts “deemed to have the greatest potential to impact patient care.”
Among those abstracts was a study led by Dr. Ethan Basch at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center titled, “Overall survival results of a randomized trial assessing patient-reported outcomes for symptom monitoring during routine cancer treatment.” The study found that giving patients a web-based tool to report their symptoms and side effects not only gave patients a better quality of life and resulted in fewer trips to the emergency department, but also helped patients living longer.
Navigating Cancer’s Health Tracker works in a similar way to the tool used in the study to enable patient-reported outcomes between medical appointments. Patients are prompted to report side effects so that any issues can be addressed as early as possible and managed outside of a hospital setting. However, where the tool used in the study generates an email that is sent to a nurse, Health Tracker is a comprehensive solution that goes much further – and, it’s commercially available today. This remote monitoring tool is a great way to extend the ability of the care team to provide proactive care and give the patients an easy way to get help right when they need it. Some of the key advantages of Health Tracker are:
- Monitor medication adherence. For patients on an oral therapy, the first question of each check is “have you taken your medication?” Your care team will be able to monitor patients who are not adhering to their treatment plan so that obstacles can be identified right away. As an added bonus for practices participating in alternative payment models where the start date of the episode is very important, the patients is asked during the first check-in what day they started taking their medication.
- Prioritize needs by severity. With Health Tracker, the patient is not only reporting symptoms, they are asked about the severity of the symptom and, with pain, the location. They can also manually add side effects that may not be among the more common ones so the care team will know exactly what’s happening with the patient.
- Customizable to suit your program’s needs. You can specify the drug and dosage so the patient knows exactly what they are reporting on. You can monitor just symptoms if the patient is on an IV therapy or both adherence and symptoms for your oral therapy patients and you can specify the schedule of check-ins. Check-in with patients according to their preferences or to align with anticipated side effects.
- Track high risk patients. Health Tracker enables you to identify and monitor high risk patients more closely – their issues will be treated with higher sensitivity as the system stratifies issues according to severity.
Health Tracker can make a difference in your patients’ quality of life and their treatment outcomes. It will also give you that extra resource to lower the cost of care by avoiding preventable hospitalizations. Learn more today!