To estimate the value of cancer care and to compare value among episodes of care, a transparent, reproducible, and standardized cost computation methodology is needed. Charges, claims, and reimbursements are related to cost but are nontransparent and proprietary. We developed a method to measure the cost of the following phases of care: (1) initial treatment with curative intent, (2) surveillance and survivorship care, and (3) relapse and end-of-life care.We combined clinical data from our electronic health record, the state cancer registry, and the Social Security Death Index. We analyzed the care of patients with breast cancer and mapped Common Procedural Terminology (CPT) codes to the corresponding cost conversion factor and date in the CMS Medicare fee schedule. To account for varying duration of episodes of care, we computed a cost of care per day (CCPD) for each patient.Median CCPD for initial treatment was $29.45 in US dollars (USD), the CCPD for surveillance and survivorship care was $2.45 USD, and the CCPD for relapse care was $13.80 USD. Among the three breast cancer types (hormone receptor-positive or human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 [HER2]-negative, HER2-positive, and triple-negative), there was no difference in CCPD. Relapsed patients in the most expensive surveillance CCPD group had significantly shorter survival.We developed a method to identify high-value oncology care-cost of care per patient per day (CCPD)-in episodes of initial, survivorship, and relapse care. The methodology can help identify positive deviants (who have developed best practices) delivering high-value care. Merging our data with claims data from third-party payers can increase the accuracy and validity of the CCPD.
View details for DOI 10.1200/OP.20.00462
View details for PubMedID 33646822