Sexual well-being in cancer and palliative care: an assessment of healthcare professionals’ current practice and training needs

Sexual well-being in patients with cancer is often overlooked in clinical practice. This study from the UK investigated the current practices of health care professionals (HCPs) working in both primary and secondary care as well as determining the educational needs of HCPs to better discuss and manage sexual well-being in cancer patients. Their survey of 121 HCPs included responses from GPs. For GPs the most common reasons for not assessing sexual health in a patient were that it was not a presenting problem or the patient did no raise it or it was not the focus of the appointment. Respondents felt that training would encourage them to assess sexual well-being more routinely. The majority of responses from HCPs working in primary care indicated they do not currently use tools to aid assessment of sexual well-being. Despite the studies limitations of a basic survey and small sample size the study highlighted that the majority of surveyed HCPs do not routinely assess sexual well-being in cancer patients and that this area needs more research to improve the discussion of sexual well-being between patients and their cancer care providers. Read the full article here.
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