A standardized evaluation approach in oncology is essential to optimize treatment and management of patients. In particular, a medical software designed to provide standard metrics and reports may help the communication among health care professionals, facilitating the decision process. To this aim, a large survey study was conducted across the United Kingdom (UK), Spain (ES) and Italy (IT) exploring existing unmet needs and questioning the way oncological data is tracked in daily routine practice with the aim of offering some ideas for improvement.
Physicians were enrolled by an independent Market Research Company according to diiferent inclusion criteria: a) 2-35 years in practice; b) ≥50% of practice time in direct patient care; c) involvement in making treatment decisions ; d) involvement in ordering and reviewing tumour assessment reports; e) to be an investigator or author of an oncology clinical trial in the past 5 years.The study was conducted in November-December, 2018.
A total number of 270 physicians (medical oncologists: n = 180, radio-oncologists: n = 90) participated (UK/100, ES/95, IT/75). The vast majority of physicians use Response Evaluation Criteria in Solid Tumors (RECIST) criteria in their daily practice (86%). Guidelines for response criteria for use in trials testing immunotherapeutics (iRECIST) and modified RECIST (mRECIST) are also used by between third and a quarter of physicians. Of note, almost half of the physicians indicated that there is a low level of data management in oncology and 2 out of 3 agree that this negatively impacts therapeutic decisions. Over a third of ES physicians believe that there is a low level of data management in oncology and a similar proportion in IT and ES report that it is impacting therapeutic decision making.
Only a third of physicians view their current reporting systems as adequate. All participants agree that any reporting system is in need of a common shared template for radiologists and oncologists. Thus, physicians identify a lack of consistency in diagnostic assessments and delays in receiving the reports as key unmet needs in tumor reporting systems –indicating the need for a streamlined system.
Clinical trial identification
Legal entity responsible for the study
Wehealth Digital Medicine.
All authors have declared no conflicts of interest.