Belong.Life Releases Real-World Evidence Data of Financial Toxicity in Cancer Patients Receiving Immunotherapy

Key Study to be Presented at ESMO Virtual Congress 2020 Shows Nearly Half of Patients Receiving Immunotherapy are Unaware of Possible Financial Toxicity (FT)

Research Demonstrates Importance of Engaging Patients Throughout the Cancer Journey, Suggests Physicians Discuss FT from Moment of Diagnosis

San Francisco, CA (UroToday.com) -- Belong.Life (Belong), a developer of social and professional networks for managing and navigating treatments, and the creator of the world's largest social network for cancer patients has published a study showing that almost half of cancer patients receiving immunotherapy and suffering from Financial Toxicity (FT) were not aware of the possible development of FT prior to treatment. The research, which demonstrates the benefit of discussions about FT early on in the treatment journey, will be presented as a poster at the ESMO Virtual Congress 2020.


The study surveyed 308 Belong - Beating Cancer Together users who reported on their FT experiences on receiving anti-cancer immunotherapy. Only 33% of the patients received pretreatment information from their medical teams. An important difference was documented between those patients who were informed before receiving immunotherapy and developed FT, and those who were not informed and developed FT, with a reduced prevalence of 22%. The study also showed that the most commonly reported reasons for financial toxicity were high medical copayments (34%), high transport costs (30%), and high drug and treatment copayments (27.5%).

"This research demonstrates the critical impact of financial toxicity on patients' lives as a result of anti-cancer immunotherapy treatments – and serves as an important reminder for physicians and medical staff," principle author of the study and Chief Medical Director of Belong.Life, Dr. Daniel Vorobiof, said. "We need to begin discussing the financial burden of cancer from the moment a patient is diagnosed. Physicians should not be waiting for behavioral changes such as poor compliance or low or nonadherence caused by financial distress. These important discussions need to be held between physician and patient earlier in the course of treatment."
FT has been described as the harmful, personal financial burden faced by patients receiving cancer treatments and is defined by the National Cancer Institute as "Not having health insurance or having a lot of costs for medical care not covered by health insurance [which] can cause financial problems and may lead to debt or bankruptcy."

"This study demonstrates the importance of engaging patients to better understand the full scope of the burden of cancer and what each individual patient is really going through," said Eliran Malki, CEO, and Co-Founder of Belong.Life. "Leveraging AI technology to tap into the patient mind enables us to uncover crucial data and insights that can assist in making the journey more manageable and successful. Belong is proud to provide a digital platform that unites medical professionals, patients, and organizations from all corners of the world, helping to advance the global cancer treatment standard."

The ESMO Virtual Congress 2020 is taking place on September 19-21.

Poster Title: Real-world evidence data (RWED) of financial toxicity (FT) in cancer patients (pts) receiving immunotherapy drugs (IOT).
Abstract #: 1605
Presentation #: 1612P

Source: "Belong.Life Releases Real-World Evidence Data Of Financial Toxicity In Cancer Patients Receiving Immunotherapy". 2020. Prnewswire.Com



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ASCO GU 2020: Financial Toxicity and Quality of Life: Understanding and Improving Patient Centered Outcomes in Genitourinary Malignancies

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