Saving Women's Lives: Strategies for Improving Breast Cancer Detection and Diagnosis

Type: Consensus Study
Topics: Biomedical and Health Research, Diseases, Public Health, Quality and Patient Safety, Women's Health
Board: National Cancer Policy Board

Activity Description

The recent debates over the value of mammography have made one thing abundantly clear; we need more accurate approaches to early detection and diagnosis.

The National Cancer Policy Board, in collaboration with the Board on Science and Technology and Economic Policy, conducted a study to answer the question: "What are the most effective strategies for accelerating the flow of medical innovations from the stage of promising technology to the clinic, where they can be used to improve the outlook for breast cancer patients?"

About the Project

Improved methods to detect and diagnose breast cancer early, when it is most curable, hold great promise for saving the lives of women with the disease. Various innovative, new technologies offer tremendous possibilities for improving the early detection and diagnosis of breast cancer, but the path from taking a promising technology to the clinic, where it can be used to help patients, is fraught with hurdles.

Scientific, regulatory, and economic factors each present distinctive types of hurdles to the development of new technology. The study committee analyzed the degree to which different factors present barriers to the development and diffusion of innovative medical technology. The committee also considered factors that impede or promote the adoption of technology in medical practice.

Further details about the study goals are provided in the statement of task 

A symposium annoucing the release of the report and presenting the findings was held in Washington, DC on June 14, 2004.

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