Exciting MRFF grant success for Cancer Health Services Research: Predicting the population health Economic Impact of new Cancer Treatments (PRIMCAT) to support PBAC and MSAC

Professor Maarten IJzerman, together with colleagues in the University of Melbourne, the University of New South Wales, Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre and the Walter and Eliza Hall Institute have been awarded more than $2.3 million for their proposal “PRedicting the population health economic IMpact of new CAncer Treatments” (PRIMCAT).

PRIMCAT addresses a health policy concern raised by the Pharmaceutical Benefits Advisory Committee (PBAC), the Medical Services Advisory Committee (MSAC) and the Medical Research Future Fund (MRFF) about the uncertainties in the projected number of patients receiving treatment at different stages over the next 5 years for three nominated cancers, including colorectal cancer, non-small cell lung cancer, melanoma and treatments targeting two pan-tumour biomarkers (MSI-H and NTRK).

PRIMCAT will take a data-driven approach to provide epidemiological estimates of eligible patient populations and quantify the financial impact of these new cancer treatments for three nominated priority cancers and two pan-tumour biomarkers over the next 5 years. The work includes mapping current treatment algorithms and determine actual use of treatments in the real-world, the identification of new and emerging cancer treatments likely to be introduced in the next 5 years, identify the prevalence of gene mutations in the cancer population at which these new treatments are targeted, and develop an online simulation model to predict the health economic impact of listing these new cancer treatments on the PBS and MBS. A significant amount of work is planned to validate the findings with an international panel of experts.

PRIMCAT is led by Professor Maarten IJzerman (UMCCR, MSPGH) in collaboration with Professor Yuting Zhang (Melbourne Institute), Dr. Koen Degeling and Dr. Fanny Franchini (UMCCR, MSPGH), Professor Sallie Pearson (the University of New South Wales), Professor Peter Gibbs (WEHI and Western Health), and Professor Benjamin Solomon, Professor Grant McArthur, Professor Stephen Fox and A/Professor Jayesh Desai (all in Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre). PRIMCAT will draw on the world-leading expertise of a number of associate investigators, consumer representatives and international peers elected for an advisory board.