3 minutes reading time (500 words)

The Pharmacist’s Role in Oncology Clinical Trials With Beth Koselke, PharmD, BCOP

At the recent American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) Annual Meeting in Chicago, Beth Koselke, PharmD, BCOP, of the US Oncology Network, presented her team's research regarding the impact of a clinical pharmacist intervention program in oncology trial enrollment. Afterwards, she spoke with Oncology Data Advisor to explain the significance of the study's results and to further enlighten us about the role that pharmacists can play in clinical trial design, screening, and enrollment.

Oncology Data Advisor: Would you like to start off by introducing yourself?

Beth Koselke, PharmD, BCOP: Yes. My name is Beth Koselke, and I am a Senior Clinical Pharmacist with the US Oncology Network and McKesson.

Oncology Data Advisor: Would you like to give us an overview of your presentation on oncology clinical pharmacist intervention?

Dr. Koselke: The Molecularly Informed Lung Cancer Treatment in a Community Cancer Network (MYLUNG) Consortium, which is part of the US Oncology Network and US Oncology Research, came together for a three-phase protocol. For the second protocol, we are prospectively looking at molecular testing rates in the community setting.

To try to get patients enrolled onto the trial, pharmacists looked at a weekly customized recruitment report, as well as chemotherapy orders that came into the clinic setting. We screened patients for appropriateness to be enrolled onto the study. We looked at six different sites within the US Oncology Network throughout an eight-month timeframe. We were hoping to see that a pharmacist intervention program would improve enrollment at those sites after the pharmacist intervention was implemented.

Oncology Data Advisor: How can the results that you found be implemented into practice, and what are the next steps with the research?

Dr. Koselke: Historically, pharmacists have only been involved in the investigational research side after patients were put onto clinical trials. So, we basically made sure that patients got the appropriate study drug at the appropriate time. But I think that pharmacists can actually be more useful in the upfront setting to screen patients for trials. Because we are already looking at orders to make sure that they are appropriate for dosing and disease state, we can quickly look at inclusion and exclusion criteria for specific trials, as well. We can basically assist both the clinical trial staff as well as the providers in enrolling specific patients onto trial that are appropriate.

About Dr. Koselke

Beth Koselke, PharmD, BCOP, is a Senior Clinical Pharmacist with the US Oncology Network, based in Indiana. Her research focuses on the role of the pharmacist in optimizing oncology practice, research, and patient care.

For More Information

Koselke E, Hough S, Howell J, et al (2022). Impact of oncology clinical pharmacist intervention on clinical trial enrollment in the U.S. Oncology Network's MYLUNG Consortium. J Clin Oncol (ASCO Annual Meeting Abstracts), 40(suppl_16). Abstract 1503. DOI:10.1200/JCO.2022.40.16_suppl.1503

Transcript edited for clarity. Any views expressed above are the speaker's own and do not necessarily reflect those of Oncology Data Advisor. 


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