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The Official Blog of Health Level Seven® International


CodeX Taking Steps Towards Achieving Equitable Outcomes in Oncology

[fa icon="calendar"] Jan 5, 2022 11:53:20 AM / by CodeX FHIR Accelerator

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Advancing Health Equity

The CodeX team believes the Minimal Common Oncology Data Elements (mCODE™) standard could be leveraged to achieve more equitable health outcomes for cancer patients from diverse populations. As part of our exploration, we are releasing a white paper, “Advancing Health Equity in Cancer Research, Care, and Surveillance, available here and will host a companion webinar, "Leveraging Interoperability to Drive Health Equity in Cancer Care, Research and Surveillance."  Please join us on January 27, 2022 at 1PM ET by registering here.

More About Health Disparities in Cancer Care

Despite a reduction in overall cancer burden, cancer health disparities persist in the United States. As documented in the AACR Cancer Health Disparities Progress Report, diverse populations characterized by race and ethnicity, location, and other attributes experience worse cancer-related outcomes.

The causes behind cancer health disparities are multifaceted and complex, with different dynamics for different populations. In the case of the greater prostate cancer burden among African American men compared to white men, factors that drive the disparate outcomes include a lower likelihood of being screened for prostate cancer, a longer time-to-initiation of treatment, a lower likelihood of receiving standard treatment, and greater exclusion from research that informs new, groundbreaking treatments. Spotlighting the social determinants of health, research has also shown that prostate cancer patients living in disadvantaged neighborhoods experience lower survival.

Expanding this frame to include the disparities present in other types of cancers across different populations shows that there are many steps that must be taken to achieve health equity.

US Cancer Health Disparities

Caption: Examples of Cancer Health Disparities Among Certain Population Groups (AACR Cancer Health Disparities Progress Report)


The CodeX Health Equity Initiative Approach

CodeX is committed to advancing health equity in oncology and is actively engaging with partners on incorporating equity-related objectives to its mCODE use cases. Increased data standardization and data interoperability can contribute to equity-related goals such as:

  • Increasing diversity in clinical trial participation
  • Making it easier to analyze standardized real-world data across populations
  • Improving treatment quality
  • Monitoring the safety and efficacy of approved therapies
  • Strengthening the public health surveillance of data crucial to identifying inequities
  • Accelerating prior authorization in oncology to reduce financial obstacles to treatment.

Register for the Webinar on January 27, 2022!

For more information and specific examples of how mCODE could be a foundational tool for health equity efforts in oncology, be sure to read our white paper. Register for webinar "Leveraging Interoperability to Drive Health Equity in Cancer Care, Research and Surveillance" on January 27 at 1:00 pm Eastern to learn more about how CodeX’s work in clinical trial matching and radiation therapy treatment could be leveraged to support health equity. The webinar will be moderated by Dr. Reed Tuckson, M.D., F.A.C.P. of MITRE’s Health Advisory Committee. 

For more information and to register:

Topics: FHIR, HL7, health IT, FHIR Accelerator, FHIR Community, CodeX, mCODE

CodeX FHIR Accelerator

Written by CodeX FHIR Accelerator

CodeX is one of the HL7 FHIR Accelerators driven by healthcare leaders and health information technology experts who are working together to accelerate the adoption of the HL7® Fast Healthcare Interoperability Resources (FHIR®) as the standard to obtain high-quality, computable data for patient care and research. The initial core focus for CodeX projects was integrating a standard language for cancer data called mCODE™, or the minimal Common Oncology Data Elements, to support better, safer, faster cancer care, with lower burden and cost. CodeX recently announced efforts to leverage the CodeX/mCODE accelerator’s experience within two new domains: Genomics and Cardiovascular.

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