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New oncology treatment initiative launched in Michigan

Article

Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan and Oncology Physician Resource have launched an oncology treatment initiative aimed at enhancing the quality of care for patients with certain types of cancer.

Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan and Oncology Physician Resource have launched an oncology treatment initiative aimed at enhancing the quality of care for patients with certain types of cancer.

The Michigan Oncology Clinical Treatment Pathways program includes up-to-date clinical guidelines for treating patients with lung, breast and colon cancer, as well as guidelines for supportive care. Supportive care products are used to prevent or treat the adverse side effects that arise as a result of the tumor itself or administration of cancer treatment. The guidelines will be shared with oncologists across Michigan.

“The program was initially introduced in September 2009 at the annual Michigan Society of Hematology and Oncology (MSHO) meeting,” says Tom Simmer, MD, chief medical officer at Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan. “Regional workshops are taking place and will include material dissemination and individual Q&A sessions. Additional Web conferences were also made available. The Coordinating Center is also introducing the Pathways Program to Michigan oncologists through in-person meetings, mail distribution of program materials and electronically via a Web portal.”

P4 Healthcare, creators of the P4 Pathways program that serves as the foundation for this initiative, will provide technology, tools, expertise, educational programs and hands-on training for developing, implementing, monitoring and reporting on anything relating to the P4 Pathways program.

“This initiative is part of our Physician Group Incentive Program, a partnership between the Blues and Michigan physicians,” says Simmer. “Oncologists share guidelines, findings and other information through meetings, seminars, and written communication. We expect measurable results about one year after the guideline process is implemented. Over time additional information related to clinical outcomes will be available and communicated to the public.”

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