Outcomes of multidisciplinary treatment planning in US cancer care settings

Cancer. 2018 Sep 15;124(18):3656-3667. doi: 10.1002/cncr.31394. Epub 2018 Sep 14.


Multidisciplinary treatment planning (MTP) is a process of engaging multiple disciplines to develop or refine the disease management plan. It is widely implemented in US cancer treatment settings and is considered to have favorable effects on both care quality and other outcomes. However, evidence reviews to date regarding MTP effectiveness have based their conclusions on studies conducted predominantly outside the United States. The authors conducted a systematic review of US-based studies to synthesize and critically appraise evidence of the effects of MTP on cancer care quality, health services outcomes, and survival. Database searches identified studies of MTP outcomes conducted in US cancer care settings from 2000 to 2017. Forty-five studies met criteria for inclusion. MTP was associated with favorable effects on several indicators of cancer care quality, including delivery of guideline-concordant treatment and improvements in diagnostic accuracy, staging completeness, surgical technique, and timeliness. Effects on survival and clinical trials enrollment were mixed. Delivery formats for MTP were generally not well described, and study designs were nonrandomized, limiting the ability to identify mediators of intervention effects. Continued study is warranted to clarify effective components of MTP interventions, and to understand the mechanism(s) through which MTP produces favorable effects on outcomes.

Keywords: cancer; multidisciplinary care; outcomes; quality of care; treatment planning.

Publication types

  • Systematic Review

MeSH terms

  • Cancer Care Facilities / organization & administration*
  • Cancer Care Facilities / standards
  • Cancer Care Facilities / statistics & numerical data
  • Combined Modality Therapy / methods
  • Combined Modality Therapy / standards
  • Combined Modality Therapy / statistics & numerical data
  • Comorbidity
  • Continuity of Patient Care / organization & administration
  • Continuity of Patient Care / standards
  • Continuity of Patient Care / statistics & numerical data
  • Guideline Adherence / statistics & numerical data
  • Humans
  • Interdisciplinary Communication*
  • Neoplasms / epidemiology
  • Neoplasms / therapy*
  • Patient Care Planning* / organization & administration
  • Patient Care Team / organization & administration*
  • Patient Care Team / standards
  • Patient-Centered Care / methods
  • Patient-Centered Care / organization & administration
  • Patient-Centered Care / standards
  • Patient-Centered Care / statistics & numerical data
  • Time-to-Treatment / organization & administration
  • Time-to-Treatment / statistics & numerical data
  • Treatment Outcome
  • United States / epidemiology