Newswise — ALEXANDRIA, Va., February 22, 2017 – CancerLinQ LLC and the American Society for Radiation Oncology (ASTRO) are partnering to bring radiation oncology expertise to CancerLinQ and improve the care of cancer patients nationwide. ASTRO will provide guidance for the development of the CancerLinQ platform to ensure that the system captures more relevant patient data to drive actionable decision-making in cancer care, as well as to advance public policy and population health issues. ASTRO also will use insights from CancerLinQ Discovery™ to improve the care of patients receiving radiation therapy.
Between half and two-thirds of all cancer patients receive radiation therapy, also known as radiotherapy, to cure cancer, control its spread and relieve symptoms such as pain. At present, however, important details about radiation dose and treatment schedule are often absent from the electronic health record systems used in many oncology practices. Through the partnership, experts will develop specialized indicators for radiation-related treatment outcomes and quality that can be incorporated into the CancerLinQ platform. Inclusion of these metrics will provide a much more complete and accurate characterization of the cancer care that patients are receiving, particularly for the many situations where radiation and chemotherapy are combined.
“The addition of the nation’s radiation oncologists is essential to ensuring CancerLinQ’s capacity to improve patient care and can help both organizations achieve outcomes that are larger and more impactful than what either one could have achieved alone,” said Kevin Fitzpatrick, Chief Executive Officer of CancerLinQ LLC. “With ASTRO, we are bringing the expertise of the nation’s leading physicians who specialize in treating more than one million patients each year with radiation therapy.”
The partnership reflects CancerLinQ’s goal to create a system that encompasses all of cancer care by bringing together expertise from throughout the cancer community, as well as ASTRO’s mission to improve patient outcomes through research and education.
“With the number of cancer patients rising each year, collaboration across the spectrum of cancer care has to be our reality rather than our goal,” said Laura Thevenot, Chief Executive Officer of ASTRO. “By combining ASTRO’s domain-specific knowledge with CancerLinQ’s broad reach, we can help physicians and their patients be more informed as they navigate complex treatment decisions.”
As an official partnering organization of CancerLinQ, ASTRO will support professional member participation in the program, advocate for streamlined data integration between leading oncology electronic health systems, and strengthen CancerLinQ’s role as a go-to resource for the healthcare community. ASTRO will have access to CancerLinQ Discovery, which generates specially curated sets of de-identified clinical data from the CancerLinQ platform for oncologists, researchers and analysts to create new clinical knowledge and improve patient outcomes. In addition, ASTRO will become a founding member of the CancerLinQ Oncology Leadership Council, a body of thought leaders and oncology-affiliated experts that advises the CancerLinQ Board of Governors.
CancerLinQ is a powerful database—created by oncologists for oncologists—made up of vast amounts of usable, searchable, real-world cancer information. This big data initiative will allow users to see trends among millions of patients by analyzing cancer patient medical records, uncovering patterns that can improve patient care, and enabling doctors to compare their care against that of their peers and recommended guidelines.
In addition to the radiation oncologists, CancerLinQ LLC—a wholly owned nonprofit subsidiary of the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO)—is forging important strategic alliances with national leaders and organizations that play important roles across the entire care continuum that support high-quality care for patients, including professionals representing the entirety of the care team, government agencies, academic research institutions, life sciences, technology experts and advocacy organizations.
CancerLinQ is supported in part through the Conquer Cancer Foundation, whose generous donors have helped make the system possible. Major supporters include Amgen; Astellas; AstraZeneca; Bayer HealthCare Pharmaceuticals Inc.; Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals, Inc.; Cancer Treatment Centers of America®; Chan Soon-Shiong Family Foundation; Genentech BioOncology™; HELSINN; Janssen Oncology; Lilly; Raj Mantena, RPh; Novartis Oncology; Pfizer Oncology; Thomas G. Roberts, Jr., MD, and Susan M. DaSilva; and Susan G. Komen®.
CancerLinQ® and CancerLinQ Discovery™ are projects of CancerLinQ LLC. For more information on how to participate or partner with CancerLinQ, please visit CancerLinQ.org.
About CancerLinQ LLCCancerLinQ LLC is a subsidiary of American Society of Clinical Oncology, Inc. established for the development and operation of the CancerLinQ® initiative. CancerLinQ is a health information technology platform aimed at enhancing and improving the understanding and treatment of cancer. To learn more, visit www.cancerlinq.org.
About ASTROASTRO is the premier radiation oncology society in the world, with more than 10,000 members who are physicians, nurses, biologists, physicists, radiation therapists, dosimetrists and other health care professionals that specialize in treating patients with radiation therapies. As the leading organization in radiation oncology, the Society is dedicated to improving patient care through professional education and training, support for clinical practice and health policy standards, advancement of science and research, and advocacy. ASTRO publishes three medical journals, International Journal of Radiation Oncology • Biology • Physics (www.redjournal.org), Practical Radiation Oncology (www.practicalradonc.org), and Advances in Radiation Oncology (www.advancesradonc.org); developed and maintains an extensive patient website, RT Answers (www.rtanswers.org); and created the Radiation Oncology Institute (www.roinstitute.org), a nonprofit foundation to support research and education efforts around the world that enhance and confirm the critical role of radiation therapy in improving cancer treatment. To learn more about ASTRO, visit www.astro.org.
About ASCOFounded in 1964, the American Society of Clinical Oncology, Inc. (ASCO®) is committed to making a world of difference in cancer care. As the world’s leading organization of its kind, ASCO represents more than 40,000 oncology professionals who care for people living with cancer. Through research, education, and promotion of the highest-quality patient care, ASCO works to conquer cancer and create a world where cancer is prevented or cured, and every survivor is healthy. ASCO is supported by its affiliate organization, the Conquer Cancer Foundation. Learn more at www.ASCO.org, explore patient education resources at www.Cancer.Net, and follow us on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and YouTube.