Spesana launches cancer treatment platform

The next generation decision-support tool aims to restore an evidence-based approach to molecular diagnostics and oncology.

Spasena cycle

Spesana launched its molecular diagnostics decision support platform that ingests molecular diagnostic reports and coordinates these with electronic medical records, prior authorization, payer processes, approved drugs and pathways, clinical trials, clinical literature, and scheduling.

The resulting decision support simplifies getting the right cancer treatment to the right patient and unifies physicians and insurance teams on the best approaches.

Spesana also announced beta that sites for the platform are underway, including Prisma Health’s Institute for Translational Oncology Research and three additional centers; as well as four commercial collaboration agreements with mProbe, a molecular diagnostics and AI company leveraging machine learning and applied data science for patient care, and three additional companies.

Why does it matter?

Confronting the complexity of molecular diagnostic reporting, interpretation, selection of care pathways and reimbursement – Spesana’s patented computer vision-enabled technology allows physicians and payers to more rapidly and clearly interpret diverse molecular diagnostics reports and translate them into action plans payers can better comprehend and embrace. This allows for advances in the super-stratification of patients on a molecular level, an improved methodology for electronic prescriptions, as well as better decision-support and workflow optimization.

On the record

“Tremendous advances are being made on nearly every front of cancer research, but it’s frankly not being felt on the frontlines of care,” said Spesana CEO Carla Balch. “The continuity of care is being lost through too many disconnections between physicians, specialists, molecular diagnostics, payers and pharma. An evidence-based approach has been supplanted by a paperwork-based approach that has more to do with bureaucratic prowess than clinical judgement. That’s unacceptable.”

“Finally!” said Dr. W. Jeffrey Edenfield, medical director of the Institute for Translational Oncology Research of Prisma Health. “A useful interface for the modern oncologist who needs constant access to molecular information, who craves consultation about similar patients and challenges, and who demands unfettered access to the medications that keep our patients well.”

The context

Ninety percent of clinicians believe molecular information improves patient outcomes. However, molecular diagnostic tests are not often ordered today. Physicians have shared that current molecular diagnostic reports remain challenging to interpret, sometimes involving more than 40 pages of dense text. This can spill over into a time-consuming prior authorization process with insurance officers, in a process that is often fraught with suspicion and mistrust.

Clean, normalized data through a platform as a service can fuel other systems’ in the healthcare matrix to achieve massive workflow efficiencies and quality improvements in treatment selection, automated prior authorization, patient copay assistance, and clinical trial support. A next logical step is an expansion into drug selection, based on Spesana’s Real World Evidence Consortium, supported by a virtual tumor board capability. These advances are vetted through a Clinical Knowledge Base, through a partnership with The Jackson Laboratory.