Impact of computerized quality of life screening on physician behaviour and patient satisfaction in lung cancer outpatients

Psychooncology. 2000 May-Jun;9(3):203-13. doi: 10.1002/1099-1611(200005/06)9:3<203::aid-pon453>;2-y.


The purpose of this paper was to determine if providing patient specific Quality of Life (QL) information to clinic staff before a clinic appointment improved patient care in a lung cancer outpatient clinic. Patients were sequentially assigned to either a usual care control group or the experimental group, which completed a computerized version of the European Organization for Research and Treatment of Cancer (EORTC) QLQ-C30 questionnaire in order to provide the clinic staff with QL information prior to the clinic appointment. The control group completed the EORTC QLQ-C30 paper version after the clinic appointment. Outcome measures were patient satisfaction, the degree to which issues identified on the QL questionnaire were addressed in the appointment, and a chart audit, which measured charting of QL issues and actions taken by the clincian relating to QL. In the experimental group, more QL issues identified by the patient on the EORTC QLQ-C30 were addressed during the clinic appointment than in the control group. As well, marginally more categories were charted and a trend towards more actions being taken was seen in the experimental group. Patients reported being equally and highly satisfied with the treatment in both groups. The clinical implication is that the computerized administration of the EORTC QLQ-C30 questionnaire and providing staff with a report highlighting patient-specific QL deficits is a simple, time-effective and acceptable means of improving patient-provider communication in a busy outpatient clinic. Large trials studying its effectiveness in different patient populations and regions would further elucidate the nature of this effect and potentially improve the overall quality of care that patients receive.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Controlled Clinical Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Ambulatory Care
  • Behavior*
  • Electronic Data Processing*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Lung Neoplasms / psychology*
  • Lung Neoplasms / therapy*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Patient Satisfaction*
  • Physicians / psychology*
  • Quality of Life*
  • Surveys and Questionnaires