47 Percent of Cancer Patients Said Most Troubling Part of Finding Treatment/Solution Was "No Knowledgeable Advocate to Help"--Wamberg Genomic Survey

Published: Oct 11, 2018

Twenty-one percent said they needed to wait more than a month to find a good treatment; another 10 percent believed they never found a good treatment

LA JOLLA, Calif., Oct. 11, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- According to a Wamberg Genomic Advisors Cancer Survey, 47 percent of individuals dealing directly with cancer said there was "no knowledgeable advocate to help" in finding an effective treatment/solution for cancer. Another 29 percent found that the most troubling part of finding an effective treatment/solution was that "health care experts could not agree on a treatment," and the remaining 24 percent said that they "bounced from doctor to doctor" to find a solution. The survey examined the views of 204 individuals, half of whom were patients and half were family or friends helping during diagnosis and treatment.

The survey results also showed that almost half of respondents (47 percent) said that outside of doctors, they wished there had been more guidance from additional experts in cancer as part of the team. And 42 percent said that they thought more help from an advocate dedicated to the case could have helped them better understand what was wrong. The survey was fielded in September 2018. The results of this survey are the perceptions of patients and their lay advocates and not results from clinicians.

In addition, 21 percent of respondents said that finding a good treatment took more than a month. Another 10 percent noted that they never found a good treatment. The remaining 69 percent said a good treatment for their cancer was discovered within a month.

Further, 42 percent of respondents said that they needed to visit doctors three or more times before a diagnosis of cancer was established. And 11 percent claimed that the cancer was misdiagnosed at least one time; 4 percent stated that there was a misdiagnosis two times or more.

According to Dr. Philip Smalley, chief medical director of Wamberg Genomic Advisors, "Cancer can be a challenging disease to diagnose and treat. Sometimes getting a second opinion on the pathology and therapeutic options can help the patient and the treating oncologist to come up with the best treatment plan. Plus, cancer is complex and stressful on patients and their families. Having access to knowledgeable patient advocates can help in these difficult times."

Said Tom Wamberg, president and CEO of Wamberg Genomic Advisors, "When you are diagnosed with cancer, you are immediately walking around in a fog—not knowing what is next. At least that was the case for me. Our results underscore the challenge of navigating our complex health-care system from diagnosis to finding a treatment solution. Getting guidance and help could be easier in a difficult and stressful time for patients and their families."

"These issues," said Wamberg, "led us to develop Cancer Guardian, a comprehensive cancer support program that includes advanced DNA testing, access to cancer support specialists, and a second opinion to help people during an extremely challenging and often overwhelming time. We established Cancer Guardian so that once a person knows they unfortunately have a cancer diagnosis, they do have additional expert support in treatment and hopefully remission."

Detailed results for survey questions and answers include the following:

Q. In your opinion, what was the most troubling part of finding an effective treatment for the cancer?

- Health care experts could not agree on treatment

29%

- No knowledgeable advocate to help

47%

- Bounced from doctor to doctor to find a solution

24%

Q. Outside of doctors, did you wish there had been more guidance from an expert in cancer as part of the team?

- Yes

47%

- No

53%

Q. Would more help from an advocate dedicated to the case have helped better understand what was wrong?

- Yes, could have used more help

42%

- No, had enough help and understood

58%

Q. From the time of diagnosis, how long did it take to find a good treatment?

- One week

26%

- Two weeks to a month

32%

- One month

11%

- Six weeks

10%

- Two months

4%

- More than two months

7%

- Never found a good treatment solution

10%

Q. Before the diagnosis of cancer, how many times was a doctor seen about the problem?

- One time

30%

- Two times

28%

- Three times

17%

- Four or more times

25%

Q. Once it was determined that it was cancer, was it misdiagnosed?

- Yes

11%

- No

89%

About Cancer Guardian
Cancer Guardian is a leading advancement in personalizing cancer support and treatment. Cancer Guardian's Comprehensive Cancer Support Program includes three key features: 1) advanced DNA testing, 2) dedicated cancer support specialists, and 3) digital medical records management.  

Advanced DNA testing identifies genetic mutations found in a patient's tumor or blood sample. The information from this advanced DNA testing can help to improve the accuracy of the initial diagnosis and may help the treating physician identify a more effective treatment option.

Dedicated cancer support specialists are compassionate, well-informed, oncology-trained nurses who are familiar with the cancer landscape and the associated challenges of managing and living with cancer. Each cancer support specialist can provide significant support during a critical life event. To reduce the incidence of a misdiagnosis a second-opinion pathology review is included in the Cancer Guardian program, as well as an on-site nurse navigator who can attend an appointment with the patient and his or her physician.

Medical records management is hosted on the Cancer Guardian Medical Records Platform, a secure, HIPAA-compliant, user-friendly, cloud-based solution for storing and accessing medical records, including radiological images. This platform gives patients the freedom to connect with doctors, clinics, family members, insurance providers, and their cancer support specialists in a convenient and efficient way. Cancer Guardian enrollees can use this service at any time, for any condition.

About the Survey 
The Wamberg Genomic Advisors Cancer Survey queried 204 cancer patients or their nonprofessional family/friend advocates. The results of this survey are the perceptions of patients and their advocates and not results from clinicians. The survey was fielded by Survey Sampling International (SSI) in September 2018. Data were collected via an opt-in panel. The margin of error was 4 percent. SSI has been the worldwide leader in survey sampling and data collection solutions, across every mode, for more than forty years.

About Wamberg Genomic Advisors
Wamberg Genomic Advisors is the first company dedicated to making genomic-based programs and services, not typically covered by health insurance, available at prices everyone can afford. Advanced DNA testing can provide insights to individuals and health-care providers for better-informed decisions about overall health, patient-care paths, and the quality and longevity of life. Wamberg Genomic Advisors delivers genomic products and services to employers and their employees via their trusted benefit brokers, and to policyholders of life insurance companies through qualified agents. To discover more about Wamberg Genomic Advisors and the future of genomics, visit wamberggenomic.com and cancerguardian.com.

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SOURCE Wamberg Genomic Advisors

 

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