Survivorship care plans and information for rural cancer survivors

Arlen Rowe, Fiona Crawford-Williams, Belinda C. Goodwin, Larry Myers, Anna Stiller, Jeff Dunn, Joanne F. Aitken, Sonja March

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

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Abstract

Purpose: The purpose of the study was to investigate the amount and type of survivorship care information received by cancer survivors living in rural Australia and whether this varies according to demographic factors or cancer type. Methods: Self-reported receipt of a survivorship care plan (SCP) and information on various aspects of survivorship care (e.g., managing side effects, healthy lifestyles, psychosocial advice and monitoring for recurrence) were collected from 215 cancer survivors who had returned home to a rural area in Queensland Australia after receiving cancer treatment in a major city within the previous 5 years (72% in the previous 12 months). Logistic regression was used to assess for differences across demographic factors and cancer type. Results: Only 35% of participants reported receiving a SCP and proportions of those reporting the receipt of specific information varied from 74% for information on short-term side effects to less than 30% for information on finances, chemoprevention and monitoring for signs of recurrence. No significant differences were found in the receipt of survivorship care information across demographic factors or cancer type. Conclusions: Findings suggest that cancer survivors living in rural areas are not consistently provided with adequate survivorship care information, particularly that pertaining to long-term health and recovery. Implications for Cancer Survivors: Without improved systems for delivering survivorship care information to patients returning home to rural communities after treatment, these cancer survivors risk missing out on necessary information and advice to maintain their health, wellbeing and long-term recovery.

Original languageEnglish
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Cancer Survivorship
Early online date25 Mar 2022
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 25 Mar 2022

Keywords

  • Cancer
  • Information
  • Regional and remote
  • Rural
  • Survivorship
  • Survivorship care plan

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