AccessHope is a revolutionary cancer benefit for members, their families, and caregivers who are facing cancer in their lives. Through our network of National Cancer Institute-Designated Comprehensive Cancer Centers, we remotely deploy the latest evidence-based recommendations, research, knowledge, and insights to members and their treating oncologists across the country — no matter where they live.
What we saw and heard
The most common cancers our experts reviewed in 2023 were hematologic/lymphoid, gastrointestinal, and breast.
Our Cancer Support Team (CST) provides information to members, their families, and their caregivers. Compassionate, specialized, and experienced oncology nurses responded to questions that covered a range of topics in 2023 and these were among the most common:
- Helping members understand diagnoses
- Providing information on how to manage side effects, ongoing care and emotional well-being
- Preparing for doctor’s visits
- Recommending a second opinion, when appropriate
- Sharing information about clinical trials
AccessHope’s experts share innovations in cancer treatments
AccessHope’s network of subspecialist experts are at the forefront of the evolving landscape of cancer treatment, sharing the latest breakthroughs and medical innovations directly with treating oncologists for the benefit of their patients. Our AccessHope physicians highlight key developments that significantly impacted patient care in 2023:
- Artificial intelligence is transforming cancer detection, particularly in colorectal cancer. SKOUT, a computer-aided detection tool, enhances the accuracy of polyp detection during colonoscopies.1 This innovation plays a crucial role in early intervention and contributes to the reduction of colorectal cancer incidence.
- Major strides in the treatment of multiple myeloma. The 2023 FDA approval of talquetamab (Talvey)2 may bring new hope to individuals with multiple myeloma, offering a novel bispecific therapy targeting GPRC5D for those who have exhausted other treatment options. This advance is part of a surge in effective BCMA-targeted therapies that are delivering lasting and significant responses. Talvey is moving this type of therapy into earlier stages of treatment to potentially transform the disease's trajectory.
- Antibody-drug conjugates (ADCs) establish their place in cancer treatment. With a novel mechanism-of-action that delivers a toxic ‘payload’ into cancer cells via an antibody, ADCs are showing tremendous promise. In breast cancer, the ADC sacituzumab govitecan (Trodelvy) was confirmed to improve disease control and survival over standard chemotherapy in individuals with a certain type of advanced breast cancer,3 and another ADC, mirvetuximab soravtansine (Elahere), was recently approved for the treatment of a particular subtype of advanced ovarian cancer.4,5 Other ADCs, like trastuzumab deruxtecan (already approved in certain types of breast, lung, and stomach cancer as the prescription medicine Enhertu), are being actively studied in clinical trials to see whether they can improve upon the current standards of care in other types of cancer.6
- Precision medicine takes a stride forward in colorectal cancer as a randomized trial establishes the efficacy of targeting a specific gene mutation. While the drug sotorasib was shown to be effective in lung cancers that harbor this mutation, it proved ineffective in colorectal cancer. However, a new study combining sotorasib with an existing agent showed success in heavily pretreated patients with colorectal cancer, marking a significant breakthrough in targeted therapy for this population.7,8 This opens the door to new discoveries targeting other alterations in the same gene, which is found in about 50% of patients with colorectal cancer.
- First new drug in colorectal cancer in 8 years. The recent FDA approval of fruquintinib,9 a tyrosine kinase inhibitor (TKI), signifies a notable step in colorectal cancer, which had lagged behind other cancers in new drug approvals. Fruquintinib's approval represents a significant addition to available agents, providing hope and broadening treatment options for a large population of colorectal cancer patients.
Expanding our reach through new partnerships
In September 2023, Johns Hopkins Medicine joined our other five National Cancer Institute-Designated Comprehensive Cancer Centers in the AccessHope’s network. We are changing the way leading-edge cancer expertise is delivered and continually finding ways to extend our reach to our clients and members. Check out myaccesshope.org/news for more information. Be sure to subscribe to our newsletter and receive updates!
https://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20230504005248/en/Iterative-Health-Announces-Upcoming-U.S.-Availability-of-SKOUT%C2%AE-Real-Time-AI-for-Polyp-Detection. Accessed December 14, 2023.
9 FDA approves fruquintinib in refractory metastatic colorectal cancer. U.S. Food & Drug Administration. Updated November 8, 2023. https://www.fda.gov/drugs/resources-information-approved-drugs/fda-approves-fruquintinib-refractory-metastatic-colorectal-cancer. Accessed December 14, 2023.