Online decision support tool for personalized cancer symptom checking in the community

To raise awareness of symptoms that may potentially be indicative of underlying cancer among members of the public, a symptom-based risk assessment model (used by GPs in the UK) was adapted for use in community settings. This study evaluated the feasibility and acceptability among both the public and health care practitioners. Feedback was consistent across the public and practitioners, with all participants appreciating the value and importance of the tool. Results showed that the best way to offer the tool is through a guided approach, where the users are guided through the process of risk assessment and evaluation. Participants preferred a simple website, with the ability to detect and evaluate multiple cancers, as well as further lifestyle based information about potential reduction of their future risk of cancer. This tool, may be a way to address the issue of patient and diagnostic delays which are often seen as barriers to early detection of cancer.

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