A study of rural women's satisfaction with a breast cancer self-help network

J Telemed Telecare. 1999;5(1):47-54. doi: 10.1258/1357633991932388.


The impact of breast cancer on the emotional and social health of women and their families is an important issue for the cancer field. Nevertheless, many patients do not avail themselves of support programmes. In rural communities there is often a lack of services, which, for many, leads to a perception of 'being alone' in the struggle to become better. This paper reports an evaluation of a pilot project to facilitate a self-help peer support group network: an extensive provincial audio teleconferencing network for rural breast cancer survivors, established by the Telemedicine Centre of the Memorial University of Newfoundland. A satisfaction questionnaire was distributed to participants in the pilot programme. Responses suggested that they were very satisfied with the use of audio teleconferencing for the facilitation of a social support programme. The programme appeared to help bridge the isolation gap that rural women with breast cancer often experience. The results have implications for the provision of self-help social support services through audio teleconferencing, as well as for the quality of life and wellbeing of rural women.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Breast Neoplasms / psychology*
  • Breast Neoplasms / therapy
  • Evaluation Studies as Topic
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Middle Aged
  • Patient Satisfaction*
  • Pilot Projects
  • Rural Health
  • Self-Help Groups*
  • Telemedicine / methods*
  • Telephone