Tata Memorial Centre’s online service: Now available for rare cancer care expertise

Tata Memorial Centre’s online service for second opinion turns out to be a boon for many cancer patients living in lower middle income countries for providing tailor evidence based treatment plans to individuals based on affordability and access to therapies. Tata Hospital's online platform for cancer patients will now be available for rare cancer care expertise

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Navya, the Hospital’s online platform was created for giving opinions to cancer patients and so far had a remarkable impact on diagnosis and treatment of the disease. The online service provides multidisciplinary expert opinions within 24 hours to thousands of cancer patients around the world.

Gitika Srivastava, founder of Navya said, “There is no real way to impact cancer care at large unless to do it one patient at a time. Every patient is unique and challenged by individual circumstances and constraints. Being able to factor in these constraints when determining a treatment plan is critical to delivering care that will maximise a patient’s outcome.”

On December 8, 2017, the TMC NCG Navya along with National Comprehensive Cancer Network (NCCN) had presented a joint study at San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium. It demonstrated that 88.3 per cent of TMC NCG Navya treatment decisions mapped to NCCN’s Resource Stratified Framework for lower middle income countries. It also highlighted that the online service is sensitive to the needs of resource constrained patients.

Dr Ben Anderson, vice chair of the NCCN Breast Panel and chair of the NCCN International Program Committee and the senior author of the study said, “While there is significant drug discovery and treatment research happening worldwide to combat cancer the therapies are often unviable to lower middle income countries. Tailoring treatment plans to patient constraints is critical and Navya’s online expert opinion service does that in a scalable manner.”

So far, 17,000 cancer patients have benefited from Navya. The Tata Hospital doctors said in most of the world, the cancer burden is disproportionately greater than the scarce access to tumour board expertise. This leads to many cancer patients often not receiving evidence based treatment plans.

Dr Rajendra Badwe, director, TMC said, “In India and low and middle income countries, patients are challenged to receive evidence based therapies within available resources. The NCCN -Resource Stratified Guidelines is an attempt by a globally reputable standard of care organisation to determine treatment pathways based on resources.”