Transitioning Patients from Infusion to Oral Chemotherapy


Julianne Orr, PharmD, discusses how pharmacists can help patients transitioning from infusion chemotherapy products to oral agents.

At the National Community Oncology Dispensing Association's (NCODA) 2018 Spring Summit, Julianne Orr, PharmD, from Indiana University Health Simon Cancer Center, discussed the challenges of oral chemotherapy agents and how pharmacists can help patients transitioning from infusion products to oral agents for treatment.


"If they're transitioning from an infusion product, typically their physician hasn't changed. Usually we kind of count on the physician and the clinical team in the cancer center to navigate that process and then my role and my team comes in when the oral chemotherapy is prescribed. They've been on an infusion product before, so that kind of helps us give us an idea of how they handled that treatment, what kind of side effects they had, what sort of things I need to be cognizant of going into that treatment with an oral treatment, and navigating their understanding of the differences between and IV product and an oral product. And then, as a pharmacist, hitting home with adherence and making sure they're staying on these medcations and taking them the way that they should is a key component of transitioning. Understanding that no one is going to be checking in on them on a daily basis, so they need to understand how to take these drugs and take them as prescribed."

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