New data reveals that 4 out of 5 breast cancer patients
Brussels, Nov. 21, 2022 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — If you were diagnosed with cancer, you would hope for the chance to benefit from the latest advances in the field of oncology. However, early data from a recent survey of patients in five European countries by Cancer Patients Europe (CPE), with support from Exact Sciences, demonstrates that the majority of breast cancer patients eligible for testing genomics didn’t even know that was an option. for them.
Genomic testing allows eligible patients with early-stage breast cancer to benefit from personalized or precision medicine. Used as a therapeutic aid by doctors to tailor treatment plans to their patients’ individual cancers, genomic testing can help with some treatment decisions, including whether patients are likely to benefit from adjuvant chemotherapy. Therefore, it can spare many women with early-stage breast cancer chemotherapy and associated side effects. Despite the growing importance and usefulness of personalized medicine, the survey showed that 59% of all respondents had never heard of it.
“The data shows that there is an urgent need to raise awareness and understanding of the value of genomic testing in breast cancer across Europe, among healthcare professionals, patients, policy makers and payers,” says Dr. Fatima Cardoso, member of the advisory committee of the myC survey. and Director of the Breast Unit, Champalimaud Clinical Center, Lisbon, Portugal. “Genomic testing has proven its value with high evidence, and it’s also cost-effective. However, it is not reimbursed or readily available in many European countries.
Additionally, the survey data underscores the need to make more information available to patients throughout their cancer diagnosis and treatment, especially from the healthcare professionals they cited. as their preferred source of information. Specifically, respondents said they would have liked to have received more information about their type of cancer, additional tests, treatment options and the long-term effects of treatment.
“The survey results bring to light shocking truths in the treatment and management of cancer patients across Europe,” said Conchi Biurrun, Secretary to the Board, CPE. “Cancer Patients Europe is committed to accelerating discussions with policymakers and other key stakeholders to raise awareness of genomic testing and ensure its implementation in routine clinical practice to help determine whether patients should undergo chemotherapy.”
Dr Steven Bellamy, Medical Director, International, Exact Sciences, said: “We are delighted to support CPE’s myC initiative, a program which is proving essential to our understanding of cancer care in Europe. As the data points to a significant gap in knowledge about genomic testing, this collaboration supports an important common goal: to help patients, and we are honored to be a part of it.”
About the myC Genomics and Breast Cancer Patient Survey
- The 42-question survey was completed by a total of 1,383 respondents across five countries (France, Germany, Italy, Spain, UK) over a six-week period in September/October 2022.
- Eighty-three percent (83%) of respondents were breast cancer patients, 50% of whom were eligible for genomic testing.
- Eighty-four percent (84%) of eligible patients said they did not have enough information to make a decision on whether to undergo genomic testing.
- Only a quarter (25%) of eligible patients had a genomic test.
About Cancer Patients Europe (CPE)
Cancer patients Europe is a recently created pan-European and pan-cancer association. The association’s mission is to provide a balanced representation of cancer patients and their experiences across Europe, bridging the gap between the implementation of European and national practice and reducing the burden of cancer on patients and survivors, their caregivers, health systems and society as a whole.
About my cancer my concern (myC) Initiative
my C is a CPE initiative that aims to raise awareness of the benefits and values of genomic testing in oncology. Personalized treatment decisions are key to this effort and genomic testing is an example of current advances in this area. The project is part of the CPE’s wider aim to improve cancer management for patients across Europe and to call European decision-makers to action.
The myC initiative is supported by Exact Sciences, a cancer diagnostics company.