Counting The Economic Cost of Cancer Treatment

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Cancer is currently ranked second in non-communicable diseases are the cause of death in Indonesia. The problem, cancer treatment is still very expensive. Not only the price of the medicine, but also social and economic costs to be borne by patients and their families.

To find out what the real cost of cancer treatment is a pharmaceutical company Roche to study ACTION (Asean Cost in Oncology) in ASEAN countries, involving 10,000 respondents. In Indonesia, Roche in collaboration with the Faculty of Public Health University of Indonesia (FKM-UI).

According to Hasbullah Thabarany, Professor of FKM-UI, ACTION study in Indonesia will be done through a survey of 2400 respondents and begin early next year. “The respondents of this study is the patient who was diagnosed with cancer in January 2012,” he told a media gathering in Jakarta (22/11).

He explained the cost of treatment was calculated in this survey include drug prices to be paid, hospitalization, and socioeconomic costs, such as transport costs and the value of lost productivity due to the patient and family must wait for treatment.

“Because of limited cancer treatment center, patients have to spend no little cost to reach the hospital. The cost of increasing socioeconomic if the pain is the breadwinner in the family,” he explained.

The survey will be conducted on patients who were treated at eight cancer centers in Jakarta, Bandung, Surabaya, Semarang and Medan. The survey will be conducted simultaneously in all participating countries study in January and then measured again 3 months later, then a year later.

Hasbullah said the high cost of cancer treatment and the low life expectancy of patients to make people think of cancer diagnosis as a death knell.

“In the design of health insurance bill there is a public official who requested that the cancer is not included in the diseases covered by insurance. Yet despite the high mortality rate but still there are opportunities. About 5 percent of patients survive more than five years,” said Chairman of the Association and Management Expert Health Insurance Indonesia.

He added later this ACTION study results can be clearly map out how the cost of cancer treatment that should be excluded community. “Hopefully this can influence decision-makers so that cancer can not be ignored,” he added.

Also through the survey results is expected from the government’s efforts to enhance the efforts of early cancer detection and early treatment for the patient’s life expectancy is higher again.


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