Context: The "Standards, Options and Recommendations" (SOR) project, which started in 1993, is a collaboration between the French Federation of Cancer Centres (FNCLCC), the 20 French Regional Cancer Centres, and specialists from French public universities, general hospitals and private clinics. The main objective is the development of clinical practice guidelines to improve the quality of health care and the outcome of cancer patients.
Objective: To develop good practice guidelines for second opinion in anatomic and surgical pathology in oncology, in collaboration with the French Society for Anatomic and Surgical Pathology.
Method: The methodology is based on a literature review and critical appraisal by a multidisciplinary group of experts who define the CPGs using the definitions of the Standards, Options and Recommendations project. Once the guideline has been defined, the document is submitted to independent reviewers for review.
Results: The working group defined four types of second opinions in anatomic and surgical pathology: personal consultation, inter-institutional consultation, peer review consultation for a scientific survey, intra-departmental consultation in the context of quality control. The main recommendation is that second opinion should respect the patients' rights and the medical ethics code. For each of the four situations defined recommendations have been developed, taking this principle into consideration.