Patients information needs through the cancer journey

Research output: Contribution to journalMeeting Abstractpeer-review


Background: Cancer education is one of the foundations of oncology patient-centred care. Cancer patients’ knowledge and education needs might differ from one patient to another. Providing patients with education and support has been shown to help patients and their families deal and cope better with their condition and have better health outcomes .Little is known about the experience of cancer patients and their information education needs during their journey in the UAE.

Methods: This study employed a qualitative approach to explore patients’ views, ideas and perceptions about their information needs and the potential for improving patients’ education experiences. A longitudinal research method was used in order to record the knowledge and information transition of these patients during the cancer journey that includes the diagnosis, treatment and follow up or recovery stages. Twenty eight cancer patients attending a hospital, in the UAE, were interviewed for three times at each stage of the cancer journey
(diagnosis, treatment and recovery follow up stage) over a period of eight months during their cancer journey .

Results: Patients reported high information needs at the baseline (diagnosis stage). Their information needs fluctuated during the treatment stage, increasing and remaining high during the follow up/recovery stage. Patients reported having unorganised and patchy education that was challenged by lack of resources and mistrusted and limited sources of information. The findings of this study suggest that cancer patients in the UAE are in need of continuous education and that patients have high information needs over the course of their cancer journey.

Conclusions: A well planned interdisciplinary education program will help
improve cancer patients’ literacy in the UAE. These measures may improve patients’ ability to cope with their disease by providing them with the evidence-based information they need at the appropriate time.

Key messages:
-Cancer patients need continuous tailored education that meet their needs during their cancer journey and that differ from stage to another
-Cancer patients education needs are not met during the normal care process through their journey as they differ from a patient to another.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)471
Number of pages1
JournalEuropean Journal of Public Health
Issue numberSuppl. 1
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2016
Event9th European Public Health Conference -
Duration: 11 Nov 2016 → …


  • Cancer
  • Patient-centred care
  • Education


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