Ensuring Patient Access to Affordable Cancer Drugs: Workshop Summary


Note: Proceedings contain the opinion of the presenters, but do NOT reflect the conclusions of the Health and Medicine Division or the National Academies. Learn more about the differences between Reports and Proceedings.

In recent years, patients’ out-of-pocket costs for cancer care have been rising rapidly. Even with insurance, cancer patients often experience financial hardships, such as going into debt, depleting all assets to pay for cancer treatment, and personal bankruptcy. In 2012, the National Cancer Policy Forum (NCPF) of the Institute of Medicine (IOM) held a workshop to discuss the affordability of cancer care and potential actions to improve affordability. Following that workshop, the NCPF has developed a series of workshops to delve more deeply into the cost and affordability of different components of cancer care. The goals of these workshops are to encourage dialogue among stakeholders, raise awareness of the issues, and to generate ideas for potential solutions to existing challenges. To explore the issue of cancer drug costs and patient access to affordable, appropriate drug therapies, the NCPF convened a workshop on ensuring patient access to affordable cancer drugs on June 9, 2014, in Washington, DC. This document summarizes the workshop.