Skip to main content.

Prostate Cancer Screening: What's the Patient Got to Do with It?

Prostate Cancer Screening: What's the Patient Got to Do with It?

Picture of Laura Newman

prostate cancer, screening, laura newman, reporting on health

Here we are discussing the prostate cancer screening guidelines, but what bothers me is that the patient is brought in as a footnote at the end of the analysis. I find it really dispiriting that there is so much lip service to "patient-centered" medical homes, outcomes research, and more, yet the patients are on the periphery of the discussion. Heck, we are an industry now, except it is all from the outside looking in!

Maybe, before academics, policy wonks, and patient engagement companies hole up and review the evidence on important issues affecting you and me, they ought to open the general topic for public commenting and questioning that is out there for anyone to see.

I know what you are thinking –and of course, it has occurred to me too: I am talking chaos. Well, perhaps but maybe we must do better. What if we had more real-honest feedback loops where patients and the public enter into real-time discussions at the front end, when priorities are being set?

In some parts of the world, medical technology assessment discussions bring patients in from the start before decisions are made on whether or not to cover specific items. What about webcasts available on demand where the logic of evidence reviews is easy to find? What about more Q&As bringing patients in? Maybe the questions asked would shift if patients participated as real partners.

We need more of this in the US. Without it, we perpetuate distrust, anger, and a mockery of the science.

Related Post:

On the Urology Workforce, Targeted Prostate Cancer Screening, and the US Preventive Services Task Force

Leave A Comment

Announcements

Medicare Advantage plans are surging in popularity. What’s at stake for seniors in your community as private companies increasingly administer Medicare? This webinar will help cover an essential story on a program that covers 60 million Americans across the country. Sign-up here!

In this season of giving, you can support journalism that saves lives by making a tax-deductible contribution to the Center for Health Journalism. For 15 years, the Center has made it possible for reporters to call attention to untold stories, highlight solutions and bring communities together around common aims. In today’s difficult news environment, the USC Annenberg Center for Health Journalism provides critical support so that reporters can produce ambitious, game-changing projects on health and well-being. You can text to donate. No amount is too small; just send a text to 41-444 and type the message CHJ for further instructions.

Got a great idea for a substantive reporting project?  Let us fund it! (And bring you to L.A. for five days of intensive training as well!)

CONNECT WITH THE COMMUNITY

Follow Us

Facebook


Twitter

CHJ Icon
ReportingHealth