What Caught Our Eye (WCOE), February 10, 2017
What Caught Our Eye is our week-in-review blog series, where we recap the cancer policy articles, studies, and stories that caught our attention.

Affordable Care Act

Brookings Study on ACA Impact in Five States

As the repeal and replace debate continues in Washington, the Brookings Institution spearheaded a study to look at what is and isn’t working with the Affordable Care Act. Their analysis of five states that implemented the ACA in various ways is informative to provide insights for where we go from here.

Below is the link to Brookings’ report, as well as a story from NPR about their findings.

ACA Replacement Proposals

Sarah Kliff from Vox.com was on NPR to discuss some of the Republican proposals to replace Obamacare. She says, “it’s ‘an overreach’ to say that Republicans have a plan for what comes next.”

The ACA’s Individual Mandate

This Politico article examines how the individual mandate—the requirement in the ACA that every American have health coverage—impacts the debate in Washington about the ACA.

Cancer Policy

Doctor-Patient Communication

A review published in Cancer highlights how greater doctor-patient communication can lead to improved patient satisfaction and lower out-of-pocket expenses. NCCS published a paper based on focus groups on improving doctor-patient communication that was published in the journal Evidence-Based Oncology.

Universal Cancer Care

Dr. Oscar Segurado writes a compelling opinion piece in The Hill, “Beyond the moonshot: Achieving universal cancer care.” He writes, “Achieving universal cancer care requires precision and personalized medicine, as well as integrated care, a multi-dimensional approach to ensure patients in need are aware of and have access to life-saving treatments.”

Coping with Cancer

Financial Toxicity

This editorial highlights the financial trauma of cancer that isn’t discussed often enough. The article outlines what some approaches might be to help reduce the financial impact and lessen the bankruptcy rate of cancer patients.

Beating cancer shouldn’t force patients into bankruptcy – editorial

Palliative Care

This link is a collection of some summaries of pain studies presented at the Palliative Care Oncology Symposium.

One study from the Albert Einstein College of Medicine, “found that the majority of patients who were tapered to discontinuation of opioid therapy experienced an improvement in pain symptoms.” The study authors recommend “clinicians to develop a more nuanced treatment of pain in cancer survivors.”

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