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Rad Oncology Homepage

Fivefold difference found in Medicaid reimbursements for radiotherapy May limit access to healthcare, especially in rural areas

Trends in radiation oncology workforce potentially threaten rural patients, says study More radiation oncologists leaving, fewer coming in to rural areas

Varian showcases first preclinical findings of Flash therapy trial Reductions in radiation lung fibrosis and dermatitis

Female oncologists submit fewer charges, paid less than male Study bases findings on Medicare records

Four considerations before embarking on a carbon therapy center The next frontier in improving cancer care

New approach identifies lung cancer patients most likely to respond to chemotherapy Combines radiomics and CT image assessment

Q&A with Scott Warwick, executive director of the National Association for Proton Therapy Find out what to expect at the year's biggest proton therapy industry event

Aussies and Americans develop 3D models for assessing impacts of radiotherapy Test different levels and types of radiation

Law in Ontario prevents cremation of brachytherapy patients Experts call for eliminating the law, as it deters patients from lifesaving treatment

IBA tech plays first-time role in flash therapy demonstration Supports eventual integration of flash as clinical treatment

Dr. David Beyer

Q&A with ASTRO's Dr. David Beyer

by Sean Ruck , Contributing Editor
HealthCare Business News recently reached out to ASTRO chair, Dr. David Beyer to discuss his views on radiation oncology and its future.

HCB News: How is multidisciplinary cancer care changing?
Dr. David Beyer: Professionals are experimenting with new models for multidisciplinary care every day. We have a long history of tumor boards to discuss challenging cases with members of other specialties. Today, we are seeing more integrated clinics where care is shared among several different specialists. We are seeing new therapies, such as radiation treatments being combined with drugs to trigger the immune system. And we are seeing, more and more, the integration of other disciplines to improve patients’ quality of life. As an example, in the small community hospital where I practice, social workers, counselors, physical therapists and palliative care physicians and nurses are now routinely attending our multidisciplinary conferences. This helps us prepare a comprehensive survivorship plan from the first day of treatment.
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HCB News: With the patient experience growing in importance, how is it being addressed by the radiation oncology field?
DB: Quality of life has long been embedded in the fabric of radiation oncology. Along with like-minded surgeons and other oncologists, we helped pioneer organ-preserving therapy in cancers of the breast, larynx and extremity sarcoma, to name a few. Now, research in the field is advancing to the next level, both for extending life and for preserving quality of life, such as the work on stereotactic radiation (SBRT) as a possible curative therapy for inoperable lung cancers.

At the same time, radiation oncology departments, which have been designed over the years to efficiently and safely deliver radiation, are now listening to patients and rethinking how we can improve their satisfaction during treatments that may span several weeks of care.

HCB News: What is the role of radiation oncology in modern cancer care?
DB: Radiation remains a core piece of the triumvirate of surgery, radiation and chemotherapy that has been central to cancer treatment for many years. Some patients are best served by a single modality, while others require combinations or sequences of these therapies. The radiation oncologist is and needs to be involved in this decision-making and remain a resource, even for those patients where radiation treatment is not primarily recommended.

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Rad Oncology Homepage


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