Patient Navigation in Cancer: The Business Case to Support Clinical Needs

Academic Article


  • PURPOSE: Patient navigation (PN) is an increasingly recognized element of high-quality, patient-centered cancer care, yet PN in many cancer programs is absent or limited, often because of concerns of extra cost without tangible financial benefits. METHODS: Five real-world examples of PN programs are used to demonstrate that in the pure fee-for-service and the alternative payment model worlds of reimbursement, strong cases can be made to support the benefits of PN. RESULTS: In three large programs, PN resulted in increased patient retention and increased physician loyalty within the cancer programs, leading to increased revenue. In addition, in two programs, PN was associated with a reduction in unnecessary resource utilization, such as emergency department visits and hospitalizations. PN also reduces burdens on oncology providers, potentially reducing burnout, errors, and costly staff turnover. CONCLUSION: PN has resulted in improved patient outcomes and patient satisfaction and has important financial benefits for cancer programs in the fee-for-service and the alternative payment model worlds, lending support for more robust staffing of PN programs.
  • Published In

    Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Pubmed Id

  • 17660328
  • Author List

  • Kline RM; Rocque GB; Rohan EA; Blackley KA; Cantril CA; Pratt-Chapman ML; Burris HA; Shulman LN
  • Start Page

  • 585
  • End Page

  • 590
  • Volume

  • 15
  • Issue

  • 11