ESMO is committed to ensuring the timely and optimal treatment of cancer patients, which includes the usage of biomolecular technologies.
These technologies, which include biomarkers, are extremely important in the treatment of patients with cancer, but there is very little data regarding their availability, use or costs and reimbursement, so ESMO has decided to conduct a study on this important topic, first in Europe and subsequently globally.
This study is very important because challenges to access to biomedical technologies limit patient access to targeted medicines. To advocate for increased access and availability to these technologies, we need sufficient data from this survey to facilitate a dialogue with health authorities.
The ESMO Study on Availability and Accessibility to Biomolecular Technologies in Oncology seeks to provide a comprehensive overview of availability of biomolecular technologies to patients, the status of their use and prescription, barriers to access, and potential economic issues related to cost and reimbursement.
The questions draw upon, among others, the Recommendations for the use of next-generation sequencing (NGS) for patients with metastatic cancers presented in a report from the ESMO Translational Research and Precision Medicine Working Group.
Open Peer Review
The preliminary survey data for Europe was open for peer review until 20 June 2022, after which feedback will be incorporated into the final manuscript for publication. The study results will be presented during the ESMO Congress 2022 during the session Complex technologies for diagnosis: How do we implement and use them globally? on Saturday, 10 September at 10:15 in Room 7.3.M – Marseille Auditorium.
The data was reported by oncologists, biologists and pathologists working in the field, and not from state authorities or statutory bodies. Reporters were asked to consult with health economists and/or regulatory authorities in circumstances in which they are unsure of an issue, for example, the cost of the testing to patients, barriers to access, or national regulations on biomolecular testing. The accuracy of the data depends on the reporting accuracy of country reporters and their due diligence in the verification of facts. Country reporters were nominated based on their recognised involvement in oncology practice, their involvement in their national professional society, and, in many cases, their leadership positions in their country.
The methodology used in this study incorporates measures to minimise error through the use of multiple reporters, cross-checks between reporter data, and a process of open peer review of the data collected.
This ESMO study was conducted under the auspices of the ESMO Global Policy Committee in collaboration with the Cancer Medicines Committee and the National Societies Committee with the following collaborating partners:
Albanian Oncology Association
Slovenian Society for Medical Oncology