Dr Porter on Community-Based CAR T-Cell Therapy Administration for R/R CLL

David L. Porter, MD, discusses the utility of CAR T-cell therapy in the community setting for relapsed/refractory chronic lymphocytic leukemia.

David L. Porter, MD, director, Cell Therapy and Transplant, Jodi Fisher Horowitz Professor in Leukemia Care Excellence, Perelman School of Medicine, Penn Medicine, discusses the utility of CAR T-cell therapy in the community setting for patients with relapsed/refractory chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL).

Community oncologists and patients must understand the role of CAR T-cell therapy in CLL management, as well as the toxicities associated with these products, Porter begins. However, most importantly, community oncologists need to refer patients to specialized centers with expertise in administering this treatment, Porter emphasizes. Accessibility limitations exist; more patients could benefit from CAR T-cell therapy than those who are currently referred, often due to a lack of comprehensive information, he says. Patients with relapsed or refractory disease should be directed to centers proficient in administering CAR T-cell therapies to at least receive an expert opinion, Porter explains.

Addressing barriers and improving accessibility to CAR T-cell therapy can also be achieved by extending the administration of this therapy into community settings rather than centralizing it solely in major academic centers, he continues. Clinical trial investigators and treating oncologists should continue to collaborate with partners and affiliates to administer CAR T-cell therapy in more community hospitals, Porter states. Although not every oncology practice in the United States will be able to provide CAR T-cell therapy, select community hospitals, even those not directly linked to major academic centers, can develop the necessary expertise to offer this treatment locally, he elucidates.

This initiative has the potential to significantly improve access to CAR T-cell therapy for patients who live far from major academic centers or urban areas, Porter expands. Developing CAR T-cell expertise in community settings will ensure that more patients receive timely and effective treatment, he says. Porter encourages community practices to view this as a collaborative effort, working together with academic institutions to ensure timely referrals and explore ways to disseminate CAR T-cell therapy beyond academic centers. By partnering with community oncologists, academic institutions aim to expand access to this innovative therapy and improve patient outcomes across a broader geographic area, he concludes.

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