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1.
Expenditures on oncology drugs and cancer mortality-to-incidence ratio in Central and Eastern Europe
Eduard Vrdoljak, Gyorgy Bodoky, Jacek Jassem, Razvan A. Popescu, Robert Pirker, Tanja Čufer, Semir Beslija, Alexsandru Eniu, Vladimir Todorović, Katerina Kopečková, 2019

Abstract: Background. There is a steady decline in cancer mortality in Western Europe (WE), but this trend is not so obvious in Central and Eastern Europe (CEE). One of the largest discrepancies between WE and CEE is the level of investment in cancer care. The objective of our analysis was to examine the correlation between mortality-to-incidence (M/I) ratio and expenditures on oncology drugs in CEE and WE. Materials and Methods. This cross-sectional analysis was done on publicly available data. Data on expenditures for oncology drugs were obtained from QuintilesIMS, and data on M/I ratio from Globocan. The main outcome was mortality-to-incidence ratio, and the primary analysis was performed by Spearman's rank correlation. Results. There is a large discrepancy in expenditure on oncology drugs per cancer case between WE and CEE, and within CEE. Average expenditure on oncology drugs per capita as well as per new cancer case was 2.5 times higher in WE than in CEE. Availability of oncology drugs was highest in Germany (100%), relatively similar in WE (average of 91%), but in CEE it ranged from 37% to 86%, with an average of 70%. Annual expenditures on all oncology drugs per new cancer case was significantly negatively correlated with the M/I ratio (Spearman's p = -0.90, p < .001). Conclusion. There is a financial threshold for oncology drugs per cancer case needed to increase survival. Based on significantly lower expenditures for oncology drugs in CEE in comparison with WE, more investment for drugs as well as better, more organized,value-oriented consumption is needed. Implications for Practice. Cancer is not treated equally successfully in Western Europe (WE) and in Central and Eastern Europe (CEE). This study showed that success in treatment of cancer is associated with the amount of money invested in oncology drugs. CEE countries spend on average 2.5 times less than WE countries for oncology drugs per new cancer case. These findings should be used by healthcare providers and oncologists struggling for more resources and better, more organized, evidence-based allocation of these resources as well as better oncology outcomes.
Keywords: neoplasms -- mortality -- epidemiology, incidence, pharmaceutical preparations -- economics, cancer, oncology, Central Europe, Eastern Europe, drug expenditures
DiRROS - Published: 26.10.2020; Views: 710; Downloads: 110

2.
NSCLC molecular testing in Central and Eastern European countries
Ales Ryška, Peter Berzinec, Luka Brčić, Tanja Čufer, Rafal Dziadziuszko, Maya Gottfried, Ilona Kovalszky, Włodzimierz Olszewski, Buge Oz, Lukas Plank, József Tímár, 2018

Abstract: Background: The introduction of targeted treatments for subsets of non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) has highlighted the importance of accurate molecular diagnosis to determine if an actionable genetic alteration is present. Few data are available for Central and Eastern Europe (CEE) on mutation rates, testing rates, and compliance with testing guidelines. Methods: A questionnaire about molecular testing and NSCLC management was distributed to relevant specialists in nine CEE countries, and pathologists were asked to provide the results of EGFR and ALK testing over a 1-year period. Results: A very high proportion of lung cancer cases are confirmed histologically/cytologically (75-100%), and molecular testing of NSCLC samples has been established in all evaluated CEE countries in 2014. Most countries follow national or international guidelines on which patients to test for EGFR mutations and ALK rearrangements. In most centers at that time, testing was undertaken on request of the clinician rather than on the preferred reflex basis. Immunohistochemistry, followed by fluorescent in situ hybridization confirmation of positive cases, has been widely adopted for ALK testing in the region. Limited reimbursement is a significant barrier to molecular testing in the region and a disincentive to reflex testing. Multidisciplinary tumor boards are established in most of the countries and centers, with 75-100% of cases being discussed at a multidisciplinary tumor board at specialized centers. Conclusions: Molecular testing is established throughout the CEE region, but improved and unbiased reimbursement remains a major challenge for the future. Increasing the number of patients reviewed by multidisciplinary boards outside of major centers and access to targeted therapy based on the result of molecular testing are other major challenges.
Keywords: non-small-cell lung carcinoma, molecular diagnostic techniques, EGFR mutations, ALK rearrangements, Central Europe, Eastern Europe
DiRROS - Published: 30.11.2020; Views: 849; Downloads: 420
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3.
Immunotherapy for metastatic non-small cell lung cancer : real-world data from an academic Central and Eastern European center
Marija Ivanović, Lea Knez, Ana Herzog, Mile Kovačević, Tanja Čufer, 2021

Abstract: Background. Immunotherapy with immune checkpoint inhibitors (ICIs) recently became the standard treatment for patients with advanced non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). Here, we present the first results of a real-world observational study on the effectiveness of ICI monotherapy in patients with advanced NSCLC treated at a single academic center in a Central and Eastern European (CEE) country. Materials and methods. Overall, 66 consecutive patients with advanced NSCLC treated with ICIs in everyday clinical practice, either with first-line pembrolizumab (26 patients) or second-line atezolizumab, nivolumab, or pembrolizumab (40 patients), from August 2015 to November 2018, were included. All data were retrieved from a hospital lung cancer registry, in which the data is collected prospectively. Results. Included patients had a median age of 64 years, most were male (55%), 6% were in performance status >/=2, and 18% had controlled central nervous system metastases at baseline. In first-line, the median progression-free survival (mPFS) was 9.3 months, while the median overall survival (mOS) was not reached. The 1-year overall survival (OS) was 62%. In second-line, the mPFS and mOS were 3.5 months and 9.9 months, respectively, with a 1-year OS of 35%. In the overall population, adverse events of any grade were recorded in 79% of patients and of severe grade (3-4) in 12% of patients. Conclusion. The first real-world outcomes of NSCLC immunotherapy from a CEE country suggest comparable effectiveness to those observed in clinical trials and other real-world series, mainly coming from North America and Western European countries. Further data to inform on the real-world effectiveness of immunotherapy worldwide are needed.
Keywords: non-small cell lung carcinoma, immunotherapy, advanced non-small cell lung cancer, real-world data, Central Europe, Europe, Eastern Europe
DiRROS - Published: 12.10.2021; Views: 306; Downloads: 69

4.
Treatment patterns, testing practices, and outcomes in the pre-FLAURA era for patients with EGFR mutation-positive advanced NSCLC : a retrospective chart review (REFLECT)
Alfredo Addeo, Maximilian J Hochmair, Urška Janžič, Elizabeth Dudnik, Andriani Charpidou, Adam Płużański, Tudor Ciuleanu, Ivan Shterev Donev, Judith Elbaz, Jørgen Aarøe, René Ott, Nir Peled, 2021

Abstract: Background. Immunotherapy with immune checkpoint inhibitors (ICIs) recently became the standard treatment for patients with advanced non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). Here, we present the first results of a real-world observational study on the effectiveness of ICI monotherapy in patients with advanced NSCLC treated at a single academic center in a Central and Eastern European (CEE) country. Materials and methods. Overall, 66 consecutive patients with advanced NSCLC treated with ICIs in everyday clinical practice, either with first-line pembrolizumab (26 patients) or second-line atezolizumab, nivolumab, or pembrolizumab (40 patients), from August 2015 to November 2018, were included. All data were retrieved from a hospital lung cancer registry, in which the data is collected prospectively. Results. Included patients had a median age of 64 years, most were male (55%), 6% were in performance status >/=2, and 18% had controlled central nervous system metastases at baseline. In first-line, the median progression-free survival (mPFS) was 9.3 months, while the median overall survival (mOS) was not reached. The 1-year overall survival (OS) was 62%. In second-line, the mPFS and mOS were 3.5 months and 9.9 months, respectively, with a 1-year OS of 35%. In the overall population, adverse events of any grade were recorded in 79% of patients and of severe grade (3-4) in 12% of patients. Conclusion. The first real-world outcomes of NSCLC immunotherapy from a CEE country suggest comparable effectiveness to those observed in clinical trials and other real-world series, mainly coming from North America and Western European countries. Further data to inform on the real-world effectiveness of immunotherapy worldwide are needed.
Keywords: non-small cell lung carcinoma, immunotherapy, advanced non-small cell lung cancer, real-world data, Europe, Central Europe, Eastern Europe
DiRROS - Published: 15.12.2021; Views: 212; Downloads: 66

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