OBR Daily Commentary

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Memorial Sloan Kettering to Offer DigniCap® Scalp Cooling Device in New York Metro Area Locations

(Yahoo! Finance) Feb 13, 2017 - Dignitana AB, the world leader in medical scalp-cooling technology, announced today that the DigniCap® scalp cooling system, which was cleared in December 2015 by the U.S. FDA to effectively reduce the likelihood of chemotherapy-induced hair loss in women with breast cancer, will be available at all Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center (MSK) facilities that treat breast cancer.

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William Harwin MD (Posted: February 15, 2017)

quotesAt Florida Cancer Specialists we have been using DigniCap for several months at 3 of our site and it does appear to be a real advance in preventing alopecia from chemotherapy. I just completed treatment with 6 cycles of TCH + Pertuzumab in a woman with breast cancer with a full head of hair at completion of treatment. The problems with DigniCap are the cost and lack of insurance reimbursement. It may not be fully effective in all patients especially with an Adriamycin regimen.quotes

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Using Generic Cancer Drug Could Save Many Millions of Dollars

(Johns Hopkins) Mar 15, 2016 - With the expiration in January of the patent on Gleevec, the drug that 15 years ago changed chronic myeloid leukemia (CML) from a death sentence to a treatable illness, insurance companies and patients have the opportunity to realize huge cost savings, new Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health research suggests.

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William Harwin MD (Posted: March 16, 2016)

quotesThe advent of generic Imatinib will present a conundrum for treating hematologist/oncologists. It is hard to argue with the potential cost savings but the NCCN guidelines. short of the difficult to obtain long term survival data, are clearly tilted towards the greater efficacy of Dasatinib and Nilotinib. Although starting with the generic medication may make the most sense from the cost and economic perspective, I am pretty sure most oncologists in the United States, if they themselves developed CML, would choose a 2nd generation TKI.quotes

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Medicare Considers Overhaul Of Doctors’ Payments For Drugs

(Washington Post) Mar 8, 2016 - Medicare officials proposed Tuesday to test new ways of reimbursing doctors who administer drugs in their offices and hospital outpatient clinics, with a long-term goal of encouraging greater use of treatments that are high quality but less costly.

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William Harwin MD (Posted: March 09, 2016)

quotesThis draconian CMS proposal is ill advised and literally threatens the continued existence of community oncology care in the United States. It is unconscionable to experiment by the flip of a coin between the various options. It is a fait accompli that if a provider is cut to ASP + 2.5% before adding sequestration that that provider will not be able to treat patients with many of the new novel state of the art cancer drugs. Not only will access to treatment for cancer patients be threatened but it will also drive many patients to the more expensive hospital setting. The new CMS proposal with without any doubt accomplish two things: 1. It will place a major barrier to access to cancer care for millions of cancer patients treated in the community close to their homes 2. It will without any doubt raise the cost of cancer care in the United States. This is an extraordinary example of poorly thought out public policy with grave implications.quotes

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Meet the Editorial Board

Community Oncology
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Dean Gesme, MD

FACP FACPE FASCO President, Minnesota Oncology...

Breast Cancer
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Debu Tripathy, MD

Professor and Chair, Department of Breast Medical Oncol...

Lung Cancer
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H. Jack West, MD

Medical Director, Thoracic Oncology Program, Swedish Ca...

Gastrointestinal Cancers
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Howard S. Hochster, MD

Associate Cancer Center Director, Yale Cancer Center P...

Radiation Oncology
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Howard Sandler, MD, MS, FASTRO

Ronald H. Bloom Chair in Cancer Therapeutics
Pr...

Community Oncology
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Jeff Patton, M.D.

CEO Tennessee Oncology...

Precision Medicine Section Editor
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Jennifer Levin Carter, MD, MPH

Chief Medical Officer and Founder, N-of-One...

Financial Sector
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Michael G. King Jr.

Managing Director and Senior Biotechnology Analyst...

Gastrointestinal Cancers
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Richard Goldberg, MD

Director WVU Cancer Institute Director of Cancer Signa...

Editor-In-Chief
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Robert A. Figlin, MD., FACP

Professor and Director, Division of Hematology Oncology...

Health Policy
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Ted Okon

Executive Director Community Oncology Alliance...

Community Oncology
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Thomas Marsland, MD

Vice President Integrated Community Oncology Network ...

Community Oncology
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William Harwin MD

Florida Cancer Specialists President and Managing Part...

Health Policy
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William McGivney, PhD

National Health Policy Expert...

Payer
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Winston Wong, PharmD

President, W-Squared Group...