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Physicians Driving Next Generation of Cancer Care By Dr. Lee Schwartzberg

It is one of the most exciting times in cancer care – new therapies are being approved on a rapid basis which means we have more treatment options than ever and patients are living longer. In 2017 there were 13 approvals for cancer in 11 weeks and 16 new molecular entity approvals by the FDA. This incredible progress, however, means it is becoming increasingly difficult to keep up with the research.

Peter A. Beatty articulated it well when he said, “Many of us have to see what walks in the door and enjoy being ‘generalists’; but in today’s information world, it is difficult, if not impossible, to stay abreast of all the advances.”[1]

In my role as Chief Medical Officer at OneOncology my goal is to equip every provider with the resources, tools and technology to provide clinical excellence in cancer care.

Physicians Leading OneOncology

We have created a physician advisory board, OneCouncil, comprised of oncologists from each practice to direct the office of the CMO and the OneOncology executive team on clinical and strategic initiatives. Formalizing a governance structure with physician representatives from across the network will ensure we are identifying best practices from every clinic.

Together, my team and OneCouncil will advance clinical and technological infrastructures to create a more seamless and personalized patient experience. The following OneCouncil committees will serve as the working groups that develop tools and make recommendations.

  • Pharmacy & Therapeutics: Design and implement a pharmacy and therapeutics strategy that ensures every patient receives treatment that is based first on efficacy, then toxicity and lastly cost. This strategy is designed to drive improved clinical outcomes and increased patient safety.
  • Pathways: Develop comprehensive clinical pathways to help promote evidence-based care. Over time we plan to integrate clinical decision support into the electronic medical record to facilitate treatment selection at the point of care.
  • Research: Build a national research network to increase access to clinical trials and advance clinical research. We will collaborate with pharmaceutical companies to gain access to trials and with technology providers to improve clinical trial matching and accrual through machine learning and artificial intelligence.
  • Quality & Value: Measure and analyze key quality and clinical outcomes metrics to understand performance at the population, physician and patient level. This will help us identify opportunities for quality improvement and enable us to succeed in value-based payer arrangements.

As we evolve as an organization, we will create additional committees to focus on areas such as medical training and education, nursing, technology and surgery.

Driving the Next Generation of Cancer Care

Our vision is to drive the next generation of cancer care in this country, to deliver the same level of advanced cancer care provided at academic institutions to all patients, no matter where they live. I am grateful for the opportunity to partner with physicians from across the country to bring this vision to life.

[1] The Oncologist 2012; 17:160-161.