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Integrating Palliative Care In Lung Cancer: An Early Feasibility Study.

B. Johnston, D. Buchanan, Constantina Papadopoulou, G. Sandeman, H. Lord
Published 2013 · Medicine

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AIM The aim of this preliminary study was to evaluate the feasibility of conducting an effectiveness trial of early access to palliative care services for people with lung cancer through use of an integrated outpatient model. METHODS Newly diagnosed patients with lung cancer receiving palliative-intent treatment or best supportive care treatment were recruited over a 5-month period from one out-patient clinic in Scotland. Patients were offered a clinical review appointment with a palliative medicine consultant at two time points: baseline and 12 weeks later. Prior to each appointment patients completed three outcome measures addressing symptom severity, wellbeing, and health-care needs. One-to-one interviews were also conducted to explore patients' experiences of being involved in the study. RESULTS Three patients participated in the study. The main reasons for low recruitment were patients' deteriorating condition and unwillingness to undertake extra hospital visits. However, qualitative data indicated that the participants found this extra layer of supportive care useful in identifying and managing their needs, as well as enabling future planning. CONCLUSION Further testing is needed to ascertain the feasibility of conducting a trial of integrating early access to palliative care services into routine practice for people with lung cancer.
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