CVS Health announced today it is working with Cancer Treatment Centers of America to increase access to chemotherapy at home for eligible, fully insured patients. Together, the companies are focused on minimizing patient exposure to COVID-19 from inpatient or hospital outpatient settings during the ongoing pandemic while ensuring continuity of critical cancer care. The program leverages Coram’s home infusion capabilities, coupled with training in chemotherapy administration based on Oncology Nursing Society guidelines, harnessing CTCA’s expertise as a top oncology care provider to give patients who may have delayed their care due to COVID-19 the flexibility to receive treatment from the safety and comfort of home.
In collaboration with CTCA and their approach to quality, safe care, coupled with more than 35 years of infusion expertise, Coram has the ability to reach 97% of the U.S. population, according to the company.
The program is being piloted in the Atlanta market and will expand to other geographies over the next few months to help increase access to important home-based cancer care during and beyond the pandemic.
“The COVID-19 pandemic has created new challenges for immunocompromised patients with cancer looking for ways to safely continue their care, while minimizing their exposure to the virus,” said Sree Chaguturu, chief medical officer of CVS Caremark and CVS Specialty. “This collaborative arrangement with Cancer Treatment Centers of America allows us to combine our unique expertise in home infusion and clinical oncology to help more patients access treatment from the safety of their home.”
Clinically eligible and fully insured CTCA patients with a range of cancers, including breast cancer, lung cancer, prostate cancer, colorectal cancer, head and neck cancers, and some genitourinary cancers on particular chemotherapy/immunotherapy medications, will begin their first cycles of infused chemotherapy in the hospital or outpatient care center, and, if tolerated over a number of months, can be transitioned home for continued infusions. Once home, patients will receive in-home Coram nurse visits to administer the therapy, paired with regular telehealth visits and digital therapeutic check-ins with their CTCA clinician, care team, pharmacists and other clinical staff as needed.
“Putting patients first has been our philosophy for over 30 years, and working together with CVS is an extension upon in which we can better meet their needs, especially in light of a pandemic. For a variety of reasons, COVID-19 has caused far too many people to skip or delay treatments. We’re seeing a 50% reduction in infusions, and, while a slight delay in treatments may have been appropriate at the pandemic’s onset, data is now pointing to increased mortality risk with every month of delayed care,” said Chevon Rariy, CTCA telehealth program director. “We’re proud to be working with Coram to provide home infusion of cancer treatment that prioritizes the safety of patients, their families and health care workers.”
More information is available here.