Cancer patients' satisfaction with communication, information and quality of care in a UK region

Eur J Cancer Care (Engl). 2005 Mar;14(1):83-90. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2354.2005.00530.x.


Effective patient-professional communication can be of crucial importance to long-term psycho-social outcomes in patients with cancer. This study identifies patient satisfaction with regard to various aspects of communication and perceived quality of care. A well-validated questionnaire was administered to 435 cancer patients throughout Northern Ireland during a 3-month period. Northern Ireland can be regarded as a typical UK region in terms of cancer service configuration. The cohort consisted of patients with breast, colorectal, lung, prostate, gynaecological and gastric cancers. There was a 78% response rate. Satisfaction scores were individually calculated for various aspects of care, particularly diagnosis, treatment, follow-up and overall care. Non-parametric analysis examined the interaction between satisfaction scores and primary tumour site, age and gender. While overall satisfaction scores were relatively high, there was considerable variation. Of particular note was the interaction between perceived satisfaction and quality of care, communication, tumour site and age. Key findings are that there are a number of issues with regard to information and communication which can be clearly improved within Northern Ireland cancer services. The paper concludes that patient-professional communication should be tailored to meet individual need.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Communication*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Neoplasms / diagnosis
  • Neoplasms / psychology*
  • Neoplasms / therapy
  • Northern Ireland
  • Patient Education as Topic / standards
  • Patient Satisfaction*
  • Professional-Patient Relations
  • Quality of Health Care / standards
  • Surveys and Questionnaires