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Default options: Opportunities to improve quality and value in oncology

Journal of Clinical Oncology June 1, 2016

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PAIR Center Research Team

Headshot of Scott Halpern

Scott Halpern


Justin Bekelman


Default options exert subtle but powerful influences on decision making. They change behavior in diverse situations, from organ donation to retirement savings to Internet privacy preferences.13 Attention has focused more recently on harnessing their power to improve medical care. For example, investigators have leveraged defaults to increase vaccination rates and boost the prescription of generic medications.4,5 Yet, to our knowledge, these insights have not been widely applied to cancer care. In this article, we explore what defaults are, why they work, and how they could be used to improve quality and value in oncology.


National Cancer Institute