Survivorship care plans and information for rural cancer survivors

In rural Australia, cancer outcomes are known to be lower than in metropolitan areas. This is the first study to investigate the survivorship care plans and level of information received by cancer survivors in rural Queensland who had been treated in a major city. Of 215 patients, only one-third had received a survivorship care plan. Patients who were aged 65 years and over were significantly more likely to have received a survivorship care plan. There was a wide range of the level of information received. As low as 21% of patients received information on topics like finances and signs of recurrence, and up to 74% of patients were educated on topics such as short-term side effects and schedule of follow up appointments. Interestingly, no differences were found in the level of survivorship care information received across cancer types or age, gender, and other background aspects. This suggests that rural Australians consistently lack survivorship care plans and sufficient information on survivorship. Future studies should examine the barriers that clinicians face in creating survivorship care plans for patients and communicating information around cancer survivorship for rural Australians. Read the original article here.
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