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COA's Milliman Study Released


COA / Milliman

The Community Oncology Alliance's Cost Drivers of Cancer Care study with Milliman has been released. Some key findings are as follows:

  • Per patient costs for the total population, actively treated cancer population, and non-cancer population increased at very similar rates over the 11 year study period. In the Medicare population, the increases were 35.2% per patient per year for the total population; 36.4% for the actively treated cancer population; and 34.8% for the non-cancer population. For the commercially insured, the cost increases were 62.9% for the total population; 62.5% for the actively-treated cancer population; and 60.8% for the non-cancer population.

  • The study found large increases in spending for cancer drugs. The portion of these costs associated with all chemotherapy (including biologic, cytotoxic, and other chemotherapy and cancer drugs) in the actively treated cancer population increased over the study period from 15% to 18% in the Medicare population and from 15% to 20% in the commercially insured population.

  • Milliman found that the proportion of chemotherapy infusions delivered in hospital outpatient departments nearly tripled, increasing from 15.8% to 45.9% in the Medicare population during the study period. For the commercially insured population the increase was much more dramatic, going from 5.8% to 45.9%. As of 2014, 340B hospitals accounted for 50.3% of all hospital outpatient chemotherapy infusions in the Medicare population.

  • The study confirmed that patients who had their chemotherapy delivered entirely in the hospital outpatient setting incurred a significantly higher cost than patients whose chemotherapy was delivered entirely in a physician office. For Medicare patients, the difference was $13,167 (37%) higher in 2004 and $16,208 (34%) higher in 2014; for commercially insured patients it was $19,475 (25%) higher in 2004, and $46,272 (42%) higher in 2014.

Access the study

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