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Red Tape May Delay Cancer Patients’ Radiation

Red Tape May Delay Cancer Patients’ Radiation

By Robert Preidt

HealthDay Reporter

THURSDAY, May 2, 2019 (HealthDay News) — When you’re preventing most cancers, time is of the essence, however new analysis displays that insurance coverage approvals for lifesaving radiation remedy are regularly behind schedule.

The American Society for Radiation Oncology (ASTRO) surveyed just about 700 radiation oncologists and located that 93% mentioned prior authorization-related delays by means of insurance coverage corporations have an effect on their sufferers, whilst 31% mentioned the typical extend is longer than 5 days.

These delays reason added tension and nervousness for sufferers, and analysis has connected each and every week of extend in beginning most cancers treatment with a 1.2% to three.2% higher possibility of dying, in keeping with ASTRO.

“Radiation oncology and cancer patients have been particularly hard hit by prior authorization’s unnecessary burden and interference in care decisions,” mentioned Dr. Vivek Kavadi, vice chair of ASTRO’s payer members of the family subcommittee.

“Radiation oncologists increasingly are restricted from exercising our clinical judgment in what is in the best interest of the patient, yet we are held accountable for the outcomes of treatments where decisions have been taken out of our hands,” Kavadi mentioned in a society information unlock.

In the survey, greater than 7 in 10 respondents mentioned their sufferers ceaselessly specific worry to them about delays brought about by means of prior authorization, and greater than three in 10 mentioned they have got been pressured to make use of a unique treatment for greater than 10% of sufferers because of prior authorization delays.

Patients handled at community-based, personal practices face longer delays than the ones noticed at instructional facilities.

“This survey makes clear that restrictive prior authorization practices can cause unnecessary, stressful and potentially life-threatening delays for cancer patients,” mentioned ASTRO chair Dr. Paul Harari.

“While the system may have been designed as a path to streamline and strengthen health care, it is in fact frequently harmful to patients receiving radiation therapy,” mentioned Harari, who could also be chair of human oncology on the University of Wisconsin.

“In its current form, prior authorization causes immense anxiety and wastes precious time for cancer patients,” he mentioned.

The survey used to be printed not too long ago by means of ASTRO.

WebMD News from HealthDay


SOURCE: American Society for Radiation Oncology, information unlock, April 24, 2019

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