How to implement the multidisciplinary approach in prostate cancer management: the Belgian model

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Abstract

The Belgian oncology care system has been the subject of a major reorganization in recent years. The basis of this reorganization is the obligatory implementation of standardized care programmes in every hospital and the recognition of dedicated oncology specialists. Furthermore, health authorities created the multidisciplinary oncology consultation (MOC), as it was recognized that there was a need to organize and to reimburse the existing multidisciplinary approach. At MOC, a patient's case is discussed and a strategic plan is developed for diagnosis, treatment and follow-up. The conditions that have to be met for reimbursement of this MOC are strictly defined by law and include yearly follow-up meetings. The success of this multidisciplinary approach is partially attributable to legal requirements and reimbursement, but also to the willingness of the medical community to accept the concept that a multidisciplinary approach is the best investment to improve patient outcomes in cancer care.

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