WP leader: French National Cancer Institute (Muriel Dahan)

Today, plenty of new cancer drugs are available. Innovative therapies have an important place, especially specific immunotherapies. They have upset the landscape of cancer drugs available. New innovative treatments which have shown an improvement of overall survival, are involved in a modification of therapeutic strategy and patient follow-up. Unfortunately, before innovative therapies' marketed access, it is difficult to forecast their impact on therapeutic, organizational and economic strategies. In order to reach these objectives, clinical practices need to be known. Furthermore, early assessment and monitoring good use of these drugs should improve health expenditure, avoiding inappropriate prescription or additional costs due to hospitalization in order to manage side effects.

This WP aims at mapping all the existing guidelines on innovative treatments on cancer and creates a database accessible for professionals.

It is proposed to focus the WP on immunotherapies which currently represent the most innovative cancer treatments options and reflect the many challenges faced regarding the proper use of cancer drugs (clinical use & compliance with existing clinical guidelines), the numerous clinical developments (many clinical trials relate to immunotherapy and concern many therapeutic indications in oncology), the identification of responders (biomarkers are currently assessed to identify the best responders to immunotherapy), the anticipation of incoming new therapies & rising costs using systems like Horizon Scanning, the drug assessment based on real-life monitoring.

Although there seems to be currently no formal consensus regarding the definition of innovation in cancer drug, countries’ health authorities use a set of criteria like improved global survival and a response to unmet medical needs. In this sense, immunotherapies may represent the most innovative current option for cancer treatment. Countries also continuously face the challenge to anticipate and support the entry of new drugs. Few countries use systems to monitor drugs having a potential major impact on therapeutic strategies and potentially expensive, like Horizon Scanning. Promoting use of such systems among Member states would be most useful.