Utilization of genomic testing in advanced non-small cell lung cancer among oncologists in the Veterans Health Administration.

Jennifer Arney, Ashley Helm, Travis Crook, Ursula K Braun, G John Chen, Teresa G Hayes,

Lung cancer (Amsterdam, Netherlands), November 30, -0001

Current national guidelines recommend genomic testing on all stage 4 non-small cell lung cancers (NSCLC) of adenocarcinoma histology. Mutations are most often found among young, Asian, females without a history of smoking. As these characteristics are uncommon in the Veterans Health Administration (VHA) patient population, we sought to understand oncologists’ decision-making processes regarding utilization of genomic testing in the VHA. We conducted in-depth qualitative interviews with 30 VHA-based medical oncologists. Interviews aimed to elicit oncologists’ experiences and decision-making processes regarding genomic testing in patients with stage 4 non-small cell lung cancer with adenocarcinoma histology. Analysis was guided by principles of framework analysis. Sample size was determined by thematic saturation. We identified a wide variation in medical oncologists’ genomic testing practices. Consistent with guidelines, advanced stage and adenocarcinoma histology most often influenced practice patterns among our participants. However, patient characteristics like gender, age, smoking status, and performance status were also taken in to account by some oncologists when making testing decisions. This does not reflect a widespread adoption of national guidelines for genomic testing in the VHA. Qualitative interviews with VHA-based oncologists demonstrated that genomic testing decisions are not always consistent with current national guidelines. Efforts should be made to address modifiable barriers to genomic testing in the VHA setting.

Copyright © 2017. Published by Elsevier B.V.

Pubmed Link: 29413047

DOI: 10.1016/j.lungcan.2017.12.006