44% of oncologists say genomics will be 'very important' to the field: 5 survey insights

The primary reason most oncologists — 66 percent — use genomic testing is to guide treatment decisions, according to a Medscape report.

Medscape surveyed 132 medical oncologists and hematologist-oncologists about their use of genomic testing and precision medicine in cancer care. The respondents hailed from hospitals, group practices and academic institutions, among other settings.

Here are five survey insights.

1. The plurality of respondents (44 percent) said genomic testing is very important to their field. Twenty-seven percent said it was extremely important and 23 percent said it was somewhat important.

2. The majority of respondents (69 percent) said genomic testing is useful now. Eighty-nine percent of respondents predicted the practice will be useful in the future.

3. However, when asked about clinical concerns, the plurality of respondents (31 percent) said genomic testing rarely provides clinically actionable, evidence-based information.

4. The majority of respondents (61 percent) said fewer than 25 percent of patients would benefit from genomic testing. Forty-nine percent said genomic testing resulted in clinical trial enrollment less than 10 percent of the time.

5. The No. 1 concern 86 percent of respondents had about genomic testing is that more education is needed before they would advocate widespread genomic testing. Eighty-four percent of those surveyed said a primary concern was questions about insurance coverage. 

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