Clinical Edge

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Insurance Status and Overall Survival in CML

Cancer; ePub 2017 Jun; Perry, Brunner, et al

Certain patients with chronic myeloid leukemia (CML) who lack insurance or are on Medicaid experience much shorter overall survival than those who have insurance.

Participants were diagnosed with CML between 2007 and 2012. Investigators looked at 5-year overall survival relative to insurance status. Among the results:

  • Among those <65 years of age, patients who were uninsured or on Medicaid each had an overall survival rate of 73%.
  • The survival rate in insured patients was 87%.
  • The mortality odds in patients who were uninsured were nearly twice that of those who were insured; the same was true for those on Medicaid.
  • Patients <40 years of age, females, and married individuals had a lower death hazard.
  • Among those ≥65 years of age, patients on Medicaid had a survival rate of 40%, vs 43% for those with other insurance.

The authors noted that these barriers could be preventing patients from being treated with novel therapies, including tyrosine kinase inhibitors.


Perry A, Brunner A, Zou T, et al. Association between insurance status at diagnosis and overall survival in chronic myeloid leukemia: A population-based study. Cancer. 2017;123(13):2561-2569. doi: 10.1002/cncr.30639.