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Oncologists Likely to Shift Patient Treatment Plans Following ASCO

The 2012 annual meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) had a significant impact on the treatment plans of oncologists and hematologists in attendance. According to a post-event survey conducted by Encuity Research, 76% of physicians in attendance indicated they are likely to change their patient treatment plans.

New breast cancer and prostate cancer treatment plans gained the most traction. Among the ASCO-attending physicians surveyed by Encuity, 45% intended to change their breast cancer treatment plan once Genentech’s T-DM1 becomes available, while 44% intended to increase their use of Johnson & Johnson’s prostate cancer treatment, Zytiga®. Other treatments noted include Genentech’s Avastin® for the treatment of colon and ovarian cancer, as well GSK’s dabrafenib for the treatment of melanoma.

T-DM1 also captured the best overall product information ratings. Unaided, 44% of attendees surveyed ranked T-DM1 as having “the most important piece of clinical information.” This was followed by Avastin (17%), Zytiga (16%), Cephalon’s Treanda® (13%), and Bayer/Onyx’s regorafenib (12%).

The majority of physicians surveyed (86%) gave the highest overall “presentation of information” scores to T-DM1. Zytiga closely followed, earning “very or extremely valuable” ratings from 73% of the respondents.

While Genentech ranked highest in “company perception,” others with favorable product scores did not rank among the top 10 in terms of overall company performance. The majority, 83%, of ASCO-attending physicians named Genentech as the company providing the most valuable information. Novartis was second with 37% of mentions, followed by BMS, Pfizer, and Amgen.  Interestingly, despite high product-related mentions, Johnson & Johnson and Bayer did not rank among the top 10.

Meanwhile, ASCO attendees recognized Seattle Genetics and Celgene as “up-and-coming” in the treatment of cancer. Unaided, 18% of physicians surveyed mentioned Seattle Genetics as an up-and-coming company in the treatment of cancer, while 17% mentioned Celgene. These were followed by Millennium, Dendreon, and Onyx.

Overall, oncologists and hematologists surveyed gave the conference high ratings for its value, and many physicians perceive the value of the ASCO conference to be growing. Two thirds of survey respondents report that they had attended the 2011 ASCO conference as well, with 74% rating this year’s event as having equal value to the previous year and 20% rating the event as having more value than before.

For participating pharmaceutical and biotech companies, perception is everything. According to data from Encuity’s Physician Meeting and Event Audit, pharmaceutical and biotech companies spent $2.9 billion on events in the past 12 months, with 11% of their budgets going to symposia like ASCO. In the overcrowded oncology marketplace, a promotional “swing and miss” at events designed to reach oncology treatment decision makers comes at great cost. To achieve the intended comprehension of clinical data and uptake of new treatment plans, it is imperative that companies measure and refine the impact of their presence at critical venues such as ASCO. Turnkey research can quickly reveal the influence of clinical information and promotional efforts on physicians’ perceptions, understanding, and intent to prescribe.

Download the ASCO Impact Report

Encuity Research—the market research and analytics subsidiary of Campbell Alliance—conducted this survey to evaluate the relevancy and effectiveness of company-sponsored clinical data and promotions. The full results of the survey are summarized in the ASCO Impact Report, which provides an encompassing view of ASCO attendees’ intent to change treatment plans, their perceptions of clinical information presented, and their ratings of information offered by pharmaceutical and biotech companies. For a full version the ASCO Impact Report, please visit http://www.encuity.com/asco.

By Dave Johnson, Vice President, Encuity Research

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