BLOOMFIELD, Conn., June 13, 2023 /PRNewswire/ -- A new study by Cigna Healthcare found that site-of-care redirection is associated with favorable clinical outcomes and increased access and affordability for pegfilgrastim, an injection used to prevent infection in cancer patients. The results showed that patients experienced better outcomes when the injection was administered in a home setting rather than a nonhome setting. The study was recently published in the Journal of Clinical Pathways.
"This study shows that we can help improve health outcomes by providing cancer patients with treatment such as infusions in a setting where many are most comfortable – home," said Dr. Scott Josephs, chief medical officer, Cigna Healthcare. "These findings confirm that home infusion of complex and expensive specialty medications presents new opportunities to maximize access, improve effectiveness, increase affordability, and enhance convenience for patients."
The study, Pegfilgrastim Home Redirection Outcomes: Effectiveness and Timing of Administration in Primary Prophylaxis of Chemotherapy-Induced Neutropenia (Lavanya Raj, MBBS, MS; Pam McManus), examined the impact of Cigna's site-of-care home redirection program on pegfilgrastim effectiveness and timing of administration in preventing complications from chemotherapy among Cigna's commercial patients. Pegfilgrastim injections stimulate healthy white blood cell growth, which is critical for cancer patients who face an increased risk of infection due to cancer treatment.
The study found that the incidence of neutropenia (abnormally low count of white blood cells), fever, pneumonia, and sepsis was 32% lower in patients who underwent home redirection compared with those who did not. Similarly, the odds of same-day pegfilgrastim administration were 43% lower in patients who underwent home redirection. This retrospective, real-world claims study presents significant evidence supporting favorable clinical outcomes associated with Cigna's site-of-care home-redirection program for pegfilgrastim.
Cigna's site-of-care redirection program provides access to pegfilgrastim and other injected or infused treatments in a home setting when clinically appropriate, rather than a hospital, and where patients can have a home health nurse instruct them on self-administration. This program offers additional benefits, such as minimizing hospital visits for patients with cancer, who are at an increased risk of infection, the convenience of in-home administration, and avoidance of costs and logistics associated with traveling to another location 24 hours after chemotherapy administration. This program, which also often offers patients the option of infusions in their physician's office, emphasizes high-value care, optimizing patient outcomes, and enhancing the patient experience.
About the study
The study's sample consisted of 13,493 patients receiving chemotherapy between September 1, 2020, and August 31, 2022. Each of these patients had received pegfilgrastim or its biosimiliars for febrile neutropenia prophylaxis. These drugs were eligible for redirection under the Cigna Healthcare program and were redirected from a high-cost setting to a quality, cost-effective clinically appropriate site of care, such as a contracted provider's office, customer's home with infusion nurses, or nonhospital-based ambulatory infusion center. Breast, colorectal, lung/ bronchus, non-Hodgkin lymphoma, pancreatic, ovarian, and uterine cancers comprised approximately 80% of patient cancer types.
About Cigna Healthcare
Cigna Healthcare is a health benefits provider that advocates for better health through every stage of life. We guide our customers through the health care system, empowering them with the information and insight they need to make the best choices for improving their health and vitality. Products and services are provided exclusively by or through operating subsidiaries of The Cigna Group (NYSE:CI), including Cigna Health and Life Insurance Company, Connecticut General Life Insurance Company, Evernorth Health companies or their affiliates and Express Scripts companies or their affiliates. Such products and services include an integrated suite of health services, such as medical, dental, behavioral health, pharmacy, vision, supplemental benefits, and others. Learn more at cignahealthcare.com.
SOURCE Cigna Healthcare