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Coverage and Cost-of-Care Links: Addressing Financial Toxicity Among Patients With Hematologic Cancer and Their Caregivers

JCO Oncol Pract. 2023 Mar 8:OP2200665. doi: 10.1200/OP.22.00665. Online ahead of print.


PURPOSE: This study examined the feasibility, acceptability, and preliminary effectiveness of an oncology financial navigation (OFN) intervention, Coverage and Cost-of-Care Links (CC Links), among patients with hematologic cancer and their caregivers who are at increased risk of experiencing financial toxicity (FT).

METHODS: All patients who presented to the Division of Hematology and Bone and Marrow Transplant (BMT) at an National Cancer Institute-designated cancer center between April 2021 and January 2022 were screened for FT during inpatient and outpatient visits. Patients who screened positive for FT and met the inclusion criteria were recruited to participate in CC Links that provided financial navigation and assistance via a financial navigator. Caregivers of patients undergoing BMTs were also recruited to participate. Primary outcomes were defined as improvements in FT, distress, and physical and mental quality of life.

RESULTS: Fifty-four patients and 32 caregivers completed the intervention and pre-/postintervention surveys. CC Links resulted in statistically significant decreases in the Comprehensive Score for FT for both patients (|t| = 2.42, P = .019) and caregivers (|t| = 2.43, P = .021) and total FT (|t| = 2.13, P = .041) and material conditions scores (|t| = 2.25, P = .031) for caregivers only. Only 27% of eligible patients participated in the study, whereas 100% of eligible caregivers participated. The majority of participants rated the intervention highly for acceptability (89%) and appropriateness (88%). An average of $2,500 (USD) in financial benefits was secured per participant via CC Links.

CONCLUSION: CC Links was effective in decreasing FT among patients with hematologic cancer and their caregivers while demonstrating high acceptability and appropriateness ratings.

PMID:36888937 | DOI:10.1200/OP.22.00665

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