I recently had the pleasure of co-authoring an article in Oncology Practice Management. The article, titled “An Integrated Informatics Approach for Clinical-Genomic Knowledge Sharing and Analysis” outlines the design of a real-time registry that aggregates heterogeneous clinical and genomic data (along with other molecular results) in a unified structure to identify, vet, and fulfill requirements to support multiple research projects, clinical trials, clinical quality improvement programs, and real-world evidence initiatives.
Community oncology practices often struggle with complicated data aggregation and management challenges. These issues only get more complex as precision medicine advances and volume, velocity, and value of data increases. As a result, process and technology modifications must be made to incorporate informatics to better inform data-driven decision-making. Robust and reliable integration of multiple heterogeneous data sources into one consolidated analytics platform that enables information from disparate sources to be synthesized and integrated is imperative.
To maximize the value of an informatics solution, it must be purpose-built, flexible and capable of consuming diverse types of data provided from labs, embedded within other documents, standardized imaging, and clinical notes into a unified, knowledge-based, registry. Having organized, accessible information provides the ability to view the longitudinal disease journey and isolate subpopulations to evaluate specific, relevant questions.
For example, an integrated platform can provide insight into the number of genomic test results for each cancer type by stage of disease at diagnosis. The National Comprehensive Cancer Network (NCCN) guidelines recommend testing for EGFR mutations in patients with metastatic non–small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC) as well as in patients with early-stage NSCLC whose cancer is resectable.1 A purpose built dashboard can provide insight into clinician compliance with NCCN guidelines to optimize outcomes for their patients. Most molecular genomic biomarkers identify patients who are eligible for targeted therapies. These types of results are of major interest to pharmaceutical researchers and payers.
It is critical to eliminate any barriers that could impede the optimization of care for patients with cancer. Within community oncology, harmonizing disparate information in various data sources and data formats in one comprehensive platform provides insights and helps enhance clinical outcomes through continuity and transparency. These types of dashboards help underscore areas of interest that can be investigated and used to change processes or highlight opportunities to educate providers.
Read the full article and see the associated figures in in Oncology Practice Management.View Article
1 National Comprehensive Cancer Network. NCCN Clinical Practice Guidelines in Oncology (NCCN Guidelines): Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer. Version 5.2021. June 15, 2021. www.nccn.org/professional/physician_gls/pdf/nscl.pdf. Accessed June 28, 2021.