Innovative Advance Care Planning Program Gives Cancer Patients a Voice in Care Decisions While Supporting Quality Care and

  Innovative Advance Care Planning Program Gives Cancer Patients a Voice in
  Care Decisions While Supporting Quality Care and Mitigating Costs

  My Choices, My Wishes^® empowers patients while also providing benefits to
                             practices and payers

Business Wire

THE WOODLANDS, Texas -- June 24, 2013

McKesson Specialty Health and The US Oncology Network―leaders in empowering
patients to live well while fighting complex diseases like cancer―have
combined their expertise to develop a unique advance care planning program
that focuses on decision-making driven by patient values. The program, called
My Choices, My Wishes, provides an avenue for high-quality, cost-effective
care by helping patients define and document the care they desire throughout
their cancer journey, eliminating unwanted and often ineffective treatment and
its associated costs. The program is now available to cancer patients through
participating cancer practices affiliated with The US Oncology Network.

My Choices, My Wishes is typically introduced to the patient by his or her
physician. The program utilizes specially trained mid-level providers and
social workers, carefully crafted educational and resource materials and
healthcare information technology to identify patients, store treatment
progress and preferences, define and document directives and honor patient
wishes throughout their care plan. Unlike many similar programs, My Choices,
My Wishes uses an ongoing, systematic process that gives patients the
opportunity to continually rethink their healthcare goals and the care they
desire during their cancer treatment.

“My Choices, My Wishes is a patient-centered program that guides cancer
patients to make informed decisions about care options throughout the course
of their treatment,” said Kevin Olson, M.D., medical oncologist and
hematologist with Compass Oncology, an affiliate of The US Oncology Network.
“The goal is to help patients understand and continually define what is
important to them as disease progression occurs, giving them a voice in
advanced-stage care decisions and helping them achieve the quality of life
they desire. Our program structure allows these discussions to occur in
concert with their treating oncologist’s recommendations.It also allows for
all members of the care team to understand the patient’s goals as they evolve
in their fight against cancer.”

The program provides many benefits to patients, allowing them to improve their
quality of life within the confines of an illness at each stage of their
disease. It empowers patients to make decisions while they still have time to
carefully consider and discuss with loved ones what gives their life meaning
and purpose, rather than making critical decisions about their care during
crisis situations. Patients who have had these important discussions often
have a better understanding of their end-of-life care options and may choose
to stop ineffective chemotherapy at a reasonable point, transitioning to a
comfort care plan where they experience the many benefits of palliative and
hospice care. The program can also reduce stress for patients and their loved
ones, since the patient has clearly documented and made known what treatments
they want over time.

Relevant information is easily retrievable and updated as changes occur in the
patient’s health status. “An important objective of quality care is to match
the patient’s goals for care with the current treatment plan,” said J. Russell
Hoverman, M.D., Ph.D., vice president of Quality Programs for Texas Oncology
and medical director of Managed Care for The US Oncology Network. “My Choices,
My Wishes supports our efforts to discuss with patients those treatment
options that are most consistent with their goals for care, both in an
aggressive treatment setting and at a time when their preferences for care may
be less certain.”

My Choices, My Wishes also delivers significant benefits to cancer practices.
Physicians and staff appreciate the program’s valuable tools that improve a
patient’s cancer experience and quality of life during the final stages of
care. With a better patient experience, patient satisfaction is increased and
referring physician relationships are strengthened. The program also includes
provider/physician documentation tools and outcomes metrics that increase
efficiency in hospice referrals and chemotherapy utilization patterns.
Additionally, it provides potential for innovative shared savings payment

Because program documentation occurs through EHR technology, reporting
capability can address both the clinical and the operational aspects of
providing advance care planning services. Data collection in a common database
enhances the ability to promote ongoing and relevant research to further
understand and improve upon patient care for those facing advanced disease.

My Choices, My Wishes also offers important benefits to payers, and several
national insurance companies are participating in the program through various
practices affiliated with The US Oncology Network. The program has the
potential to increase member satisfaction by offering members a means to
proactively self-determine quality of life issues. It also creates many
opportunities to reduce overall healthcare costs while still supporting
high-quality care.

My Choices, My Wishes is an innovative, new approach to advance care planning
that helps to educate and empower patients to take control of advanced-stage
care decisions. Additionally, it engages physicians and payers in a
collaborative endeavor that aims to support value-based quality care and a
better patient experience.

About McKesson Specialty Health

McKesson Specialty Health, a division of McKesson Corporation, empowers the
community patient care delivery system by helping community practices advance
the science, technology and quality of care. Through innovative clinical,
research, business and operational solutions, facilitated by integrated
technology systems, we focus on improving the financial health of our
customers so they may provide the best care to their patients. For more
information, visit

About The US Oncology Network

The US Oncology Network is one of the nation’s largest networks of integrated,
community-based oncology practices dedicated to advancing high-quality,
evidence-based cancer care. A physician-led organization, The US Oncology
Network unites like-minded physicians and clinicians around a common vision of
improving patient outcomes and quality of life. Leveraging healthcare
information technology, shared best practices, evidence-based guidelines and
quality measurements, physicians within The US Oncology Network are pioneering
new ways to achieve this vision. The US Oncology Network is committed to
strengthening patient access to integrated care in local communities across
the nation, including collaboration with a variety of payers, hospitals and
academic institutions. The US Oncology Network is supported by McKesson
Specialty Health, a division of McKesson Corporation focused on empowering a
vibrant and sustainable community patient care delivery system. For more
information, visit


McKesson Specialty Health
Claire Crye, 281-863-6783 (Media)
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