Anju Mathew, CEO & Co-Founder
Three years ago, Lijo Simpson, the co-founder and Chief Medical Officer of OncoLens came across the significant administrative burdens associated with the functioning of tumor boards. “These are internal discussion boards for cancer programs where a multi-disciplinary group of providers including oncologists, radiation oncologists, and surgeons discusses patient cases and outline treatment plans,” explains Anju Mathew, the CEO and co-founder of OncoLens. Typically operated by cancer registrars and nurse navigators, tumor boards involved significant manual effort in gathering the appropriate data for each patient. In addition, the augmented number of retiring cancer registrars further worsened the state of affairs. Perplexed by the situation in hand, Simpson and Anju devised a solution that could streamline the tumor board process.
After testing the innovative system with a renowned community cancer center for 18 months, the dynamic duo figured that there was a 90 percent reduction in the administrative burden. Through an automated platform, they streamlined redundant tasks at the hospital’s tumor board and eliminated the need for board members to gather data from different sources. With the vision to provide every cancer patient with access to the best possible minds, therapies, and innovations in care—OncoLenscame up with the idea of delivering a software as a service (SaaS) platform that replaces the labor-intensive process of collecting, presenting, and reporting cases for CoC (Commission on Cancer) and NAPBC (National Accreditation Program for Breast Centers) accreditation.
The platform merges case-specific clinical decision support criteria—including applicable clinical trials—to support the tumor board’s efforts to care treatment. “Through this platform, we can provide data such as available clinical trials or the latest solutions in precision medicine that physicians can bring up for discussion with the patients,” says Anju.
Our mission is to ensure that care providers are knowledgeable of and have access to the best treatment options available for the cancer patient, even in the community setting
OncoLens’ cloud-based platform figures out the best solution for the patients by pre-screening trials at the hospital or affiliated hospitals and matching them with the patient’s health condition. The physicians can either enter medical details of the patient manually in a predefined template or gather information from the integrated EMR system. At the backend, the platform runs the pre-screen function and delivers the care results for the physicians. Through their platform, OncoLens was able to deliver significant time savings to their first customer, DeKalb Medical Center. DeKalb was running four tumor boards and needed to add two more. For an average tumor board meeting, administrators required 10-15 hours to gather data and prepare. With OncoLens, that reduced to less than an hour and was able to add on more tumor boards with little additional effort. OncoLens’ platform automated the process and identified clinical trials for the patients. The platform also standardized the tumor board discussions, which supported the physicians’ and centers efforts to improve quality of care.
OncoLens adheres to the regulatory mandates by using a HIPAA-compliant server and establishing data encryption and security needs in place. They also have specific features built into the system that ensures robust security for the platform.
As the next step in its mission to help physicians take the best possible decision for a patient at the right time, OncoLensis working on enhancing its ability to bring clinical trials to different community cancer sites. To that end, the firm has partnered with a clinical trial partner that can deploy OncoLens’ clinical trials ability to the site within 14 days in case of a patient match. Anju adds that OncoLens will also aim at building their clinical decision support platform by integrating additional cancer content into their platform in the near future.