Nudges Informed by Behavioral Economics to Increase Utilization of Higher-Value Cancer Drugs

  • Behavior Change,
  • Payment Models & Affordability
Project Status: Complete

This project tested the effects of clinician-directed nudges on the utilization of high-value, lower cost cancer drugs. Findings showed that these nudges increased utilization of higher-value, lower cost cancer drugs by several fold among 115 medical oncologists treating 1,476 patients who received 4,567 prescriptions of bone-modifying agents.

Identifying effective ways to promote high-value, evidence-based prescribing is particularly important in cancer care, where spending is estimated to surpass $170 billion by 2020, driven in large part by prescription drugs.

PC3I researchers found that nudges within the electronic health record directed at medical oncologists increased utilization of higher-value, lower cost cancer drugs by several fold among 115 medical oncologists treating 1,476 patients who received 4,567 prescriptions of bone-modifying agents at 5 hospital and 4 community outpatient treatment facilities in Pennsylvania and New Jersey.

The impact has been reduced financial toxicity and reduced health care spending, with similar treatment effectiveness through efficient, scalable interventions within the electronic health record.

Departments of Medicine, Divisions of Hematology Oncology and General Internal Medicine, Biostatistics, Epidemiology and Informatics, Psychiatry, Lancaster General Hospital, the University of Pennsylvania Cancer Service Line, and the Abramson Cancer Center Cancer Control Program

Project Leads

  • Samuel Takvorian

    MD, MSHP

    Associate Director, PC3I & Director, Program in Patient-Generated Health Data, PC3I

  • Justin Bekelman

    MD

    Director, Penn Center for Cancer Care Innovation

Project Team

  • Rinad Beidas

  • Vrushabh Ladage

  • Drew Mace

  • Randall Oyer

  • Larry Shulman

  • E. Paul Wileyto

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