Majority of cancer patients in India are not on right path of treatment, said a study by Onco.com, the world’s first online cancer care platform.
It found that over 15% of patients were getting completely wrong treatment, 27% were not being given the right chemotherapy drugs, and 41% did not undergo complete tests. Only 17% of patients were on the right treatment path as per international scientific guidelines. In other words, whopping 83% patients were getting mistreated!
Rashie Jain, Cofounder & CEO, Onco.com, said: “The purpose of the study, conducted across a six-month period with data captured by Onco.com, was to understand the adherence to international treatment protocols for cancer patients who undergo cancer treatment in India.
“It covered 365 patients who took online second opinion from Onco’s multi-disciplinary tumor board regarding their treatment. About 80% of these hailed from India, 10% from Africa, and 5% each from Bangladesh and the Middle-East.”
“Cancer is a complex disease and requires a multi-disciplinary and evidence-based approach. While this is followed in developed countries, in developing nations like India, patients don’t get access to multi-disciplinary care. This is a major reason for higher death rates in these countries,” said Dr Amit Jotwani, cofounder of Onco.com and a seasoned oncologist.
“Our study has shown that taking second opinion in the form of multi-disciplinary review by a team of doctors from three specialties – surgical, medical and radiation oncology – can dramatically improve outcomes for cancer patients. Such a review provides much-needed validation and correction in a patient’s treatment plan, thus preventing mistreatment and unnecessary treatment and optimizing costs,” Jotwani further stated.
Mistreatment in medical terminology is defined as deviation from the standard treatment protocol. It does not necessarily mean wrong treatment, but that the patient is not getting the best available treatment.