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What Is a Life Worth?
QALY stands for the quality of an adjusted life year. It is a ratio that economists use to determine the quality and quantity of life in order to ascertain the cost of medical interventions. But, as IMF Chairman Dr. Brian Durie asks, where do these numbers come from? In his blog this week, Dr. Durie calls for regulatory agencies to respect patients’ rights to the best care possible by not assessing them based on an arbirtrary number such as QALY.

What is this new Black Swan project called iStopMM?

In this week’s video, Dr. Brian Durie describes how the iStopMM study aims to prevent myeloma in the entire adult population of adults who are age 40 or over in Iceland.

BOTTOM LINE: While a seemingly lofty goal, iStopMM may bridge the pathway to eliminating myeloma.

Elotuzumab Approved in Europe for Multiple Myeloma
The European Commission approved elotuzumab (Empliciti) for use in combination with lenalidomide (Revlimid) and dexamethasone for patients with multiple myeloma following progression on at least 1 prior therapy.

Watch the replay of "Recent FDA Approved Treatments for Myeloma" teleconference
Dr. Rafat Abonour, Director, Multiple Myeloma Program at Indiana University Simon Cancer Center, and IMF Medical Liaison, speaks about myeloma drugs recently approved by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and their real-world impact in the US. With many of these drugs slated for approval or use in clinical trials around the world, tune into this free webinar to hear about treatments that could soon be available.

The IMF's Nurse Leadership Board Publishes a Study in Cancer Medicine
Congratulations to the members of the International Myeloma Foundation’s Nurse Leadership Board (NLB) on the publication of their manuscript, "Lack of Health Maintenance Exams and Risk in Myeloma Patients,” in the journal Cancer Medicine. Dr. Joseph D. Tariman, a founding member of the NLB, is the lead author of this collaborative research paper, which discusses health maintenance and preventative care practices of multiple myeloma patients. The NLB appreciates the leadership of Charise Gleason, MSN, NP and Dr. Lonial Sagar, who provided guidance in all aspects of Institutional Review Board submission and for his insights on manuscript development and revisions.

Myeloma Treatment Recommendations Should Come from the Experts
A myeloma drug cost-assessment report that IMF Chairman Dr. Brian Durie wrote about in his blog last week continues to raise eyebrows—and considerable ire—among patients. They worry the report’s findings could limit treatment access. As a May 26th hearing on the draft ICER report draws near, Dr. Durie argues that the International Myeloma Working Group offers a superior framework for treatment decision-making recommendations. To read his blog, click HERE.

Make Your Voice Heard by May 9th on Myeloma Treatment Pricing Recommendations
Last week, IMF Chairman Dr. Brian Durie wrote a blog post entitled “ICER Report: Could a Flawed Approach to Cost-Effectiveness Assessment Put Patients at Risk?”. In this post, he issued a call for myeloma patients to voice their concerns to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) about recommendations from the Institute for Clinical and Economic Review, and to encourage CMS not to take them into account when making coverage decisions. For more information on how to comment, and specific talking points to help you craft your message, click HERE. The window to comment is closing, so make sure you take action today!

Flawed Approach to Assessing Value of Myeloma Treatment Puts Patients at Risk
Flawed Approach to Assessing Value of Myeloma Treatment Puts Patients at Risk From the American Society of Clinical Oncology to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, a growing number of institutions are attempting to assess the cost-effectiveness of myeloma treatments. In his blog this week, IMF Chairman Dr. Brian Durie responds to the hue and cry over the latest such effort, a report entitled “Treatment Options for Relapsed or Refractory Multiple Myeloma.” Its pricing recommendations, writes Dr. Durie, have “serious implications and serious flaws.” To read Dr. Durie’s blog, click HERE.

IMF Board Member Dr. Edith Mitchell Named to Cancer Moonshot Advisory Panel
Edith Mitchell, M.D., Professor of Medical Oncology and researcher at the Sidney Kimmel Cancer Center at Thomas Jefferson University was appointed one of 28 cancer experts that will provide input on Vice President Joe Biden’s Cancer Moonshot Initiative.

The IMF Continues European Expansion with New Partnership with Belgian Patient Group
The IMF continues to extend our educational seminars in Europe, and we are proud to announce a new collaboration with the Belgian group MYMU (Association de patients atteints de Myèlome). The first IMF/MYMU Patient & Family Seminar wil be held in April 2017 in Brussels, Belgium. The president of MYMU, Thierri Barbieux (at right), will invite French- and Flemish-speaking Belgian patients to participate, as well as myeloma experts from both Belgium and France. For more information about the MYMU, click HERE.

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