“In the 1950s and 1960s, 4% of children survived with that diagnosis [leukemia]. In 2010, 80% to 85% of children in all risk categories survived and are cured.” Dr. Beverly Bell, Medical Director of the oncology program at inVentiv Medical Management
This is a quote from the June 1, 2012 article titled Trial and Error in Employee Benefit News. It’s an important fact as we watch cancer go from a terminal diagnosis and medical event to a chronic disease. Working with the survivors is something that Dr. Bell and I have discussed several times.
Here are some other facts from the article:
- 1/3 of childhood cancers are leukemias.
- 10,400 kids under 15 in the US were diagnosed with leukemia in 2007.
- About 1,545 of them will die fro the disease.
- Approximately 75-80% of pediatric cancer patients are put on a clinical trial.
The article goes on to talk about several things to consider:
- Plan language modifications.
- Access to pediatric oncology nurses.
- Access to a oncology network of centers of excellence.
- General support for the entire family perhaps through an EAP program.
- Hospice care.
- Medical travel / tourism.
Creating a holistic strategy to address oncology is a big effort and one that is critical to helping these patients.