Implications of a needs assessment intervention for people with progressive cancer: impact on clinical assessment, response and service utilisation

Psychooncology. 2012 May;21(5):550-7. doi: 10.1002/pon.1933. Epub 2011 Feb 25.

Abstract

Objective: To assess the impact of the systematic use of the Palliative Care Needs Assessment Guidelines and Needs Assessment Tool: Progressive Disease-Cancer (NAT: PD-C) on clinical assessment, response and service utilisation.

Study setting: Three major oncology treatment centres in NSW, Australia.

Study design: Between March 2007 and December 2009, 219 people with advanced cancer were recruited to complete bi-monthly telephone interviews. The intervention, introduced after at least two baseline interviews, involved training health professionals to complete the NAT: PD-C with patients approximately monthly.

Data collection: Rates of service use and referrals were compared pre- and post-introduction of the NAT: PD-C. Rates of completion of the tool; its impact on consultation length; and the types of needs and follow-up care to address these were also assessed.

Principal findings: The NAT: PD-C had a high rate of completion; identified needs consistent with those self-reported by patients in interviews; and did not alter consultation length. No changes in the number of health professionals seen by patients were found pre- and post-intervention.

Conclusion: The NAT: PD-C is an efficient and acceptable strategy for supporting needs-based cancer care that can potentially be incorporated into standard routine care without increasing the burden on care providers.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Australia
  • Delivery of Health Care*
  • Feasibility Studies
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Needs Assessment*
  • Neoplasms / therapy*
  • Palliative Care / statistics & numerical data*