|CANCER & TREATMENTS FOR CANCER CENTER PATIENTS PREVENTION & RISK ASSESSMENT CLINICAL TRIALS & RESEARCH LIVING WITH CANCER|
U-M CCC - Progress Newsletter Spring 2002 Online
Unprecedented Access to Cancer Clinical Trials Forged
While early detection offers the best opportunity to cure cancers, many Michigan citizens with advanced stages of cancer would have benefited from being part of an advanced clinical trial for treatment.
In an innovative move to open access for Michigan cancer
patients to clinical trials, a newly formed coalition
including the University of Michigan Cancer Center, other
cancer centers and hospitals, patient advocate groups, employers,
insurance companies, and the Department of Community Health
has forged an unprecedented agreement to cover costs
of cancer clinical trials.
This year, an estimated 45,300 cases of cancer will be diagnosed in Michigan, and an estimated 19,800 Michigan citizens will die. While early detection offers the best opportunity to cure cancers, many Michigan citizens with advanced stages of cancer would have benefited from being part of an advanced clinical trial for treatment. The American Cancer Society reports that less than 5 percent of adult patients participate in cancer clinical trials, even though they are the best way to develop newer, more effective and less invasive cancer treatments.
Overall access to such clinical trials has been
problematic because of the issue of coverage. Until recently,
clinical trials have been viewed as being experimental,
so many procedures are not covered by insurers, even when
such procedures would have been covered in other care not
associated with a clinical trial.
This new agreement would make Michigan one of
only five states to cover routine patient costs associated
with clinical trials.