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Development and Pilot Testing of a Nurse-Led Posttreatment Support Package for Bowel Cancer Survivors

Jefford, Michael PhD; Lotfi-Jam, Kerryann BA (Soc Sci); Baravelli, Carl BBSc; Grogan, Suzi MN; Rogers, Megan MHS; Krishnasamy, Meinir PhD; Pezaro, Carmel MBChB; Milne, Donna PhD; Aranda, Sanchia PhD; King, Dorothy PhD; Shaw, Beryl PhD; Schofield, Penelope PhD

doi: 10.1097/NCC.0b013e3181f22f02
ARTICLES: ONLINE ONLY
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Background: Colorectal cancer (CRC) is the most common cancer affecting both men and women in Australia. The illness and related treatments can cause distressing adverse effects, impact on emotional and psychological well-being, and adversely affect social, occupational, and relationship functioning. Current models of follow-up fail to address the complex needs arising after treatment completion. Strategies to better prepare and support survivors are urgently required.

Objectives: This study aimed to develop and pilot test an innovative supportive care program for people with potentially curative CRC.

Methods: The SurvivorCare intervention was developed by a multidisciplinary team using 3 key principles: (1) promote patient involvement and engagement; (2) address the specific needs of individual patients, and (3) use evidence-based strategies to promote well-being and reduce treatment sequelae. It also addressed 4 essential components of survivorship planning, defined by the US Institute of Medicine. Ten survivors completed questionnaires and satisfaction interviews before and after receiving the intervention.

Results: SurvivorCare comprises survivorship educational materials (booklet, DVD, and question prompt list), a tailored survivorship care plan, a tailored nurse-led end-of-treatment consultation, and 3 follow-up telephone calls. Pilot data demonstrated that survivors considered the intervention appropriate, relevant, and useful.

Conclusions: SurvivorCare is a well-received, comprehensive intervention that will now be evaluated in a randomized controlled trial aiming to reduce distress and unmet needs and improve quality of life in CRC survivors.

Implications for Practice: If SurvivorCare is shown to be effective, it will be possible to quickly and broadly disseminate this model of care.

Background: Colorectal cancer (CRC) is the most common cancer affecting both men and women in Australia. The illness and related treatments can cause distressing adverse effects, impact on emotional and psychological well-being, and adversely affect social, occupational, and relationship functioning. Current models of follow-up fail to address the complex needs arising after treatment completion. Strategies to better prepare and support survivors are urgently required. Objectives: This study aimed to develop and pilot test an innovative supportive care program for people with potentially curative CRC. Methods: The SurvivorCare intervention was developed by a multidisciplinary team using 3 key principles: (1) promote patient involvement and engagement; (2) address the specific needs of individual patients, and (3) use evidence-based strategies to promote well-being and reduce treatment sequelae. It also addressed 4 essential components of survivorship planning, defined by the US Institute of Medicine. Ten survivors completed questionnaires and satisfaction interviews before and after receiving the intervention. Results: SurvivorCare comprises survivorship educational materials (booklet, DVD, and question prompt list), a tailored survivorship care plan, a tailored nurse-led end-of-treatment consultation, and 3 follow-up telephone calls. Pilot data demonstrated that survivors considered the intervention appropriate, relevant, and useful. Conclusions: SurvivorCare is a well-received, comprehensive intervention that will now be evaluated in a randomized controlled trial aiming to reduce distress and unmet needs and improve quality of life in CRC survivors. Implications for Practice: If SurvivorCare is shown to be effective, it will be possible to quickly and broadly disseminate this model of care.

Author Affiliations: Department of Nursing and Supportive Care Research, Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre, East Melbourne (Drs Jefford, Krishnasamy, Milne, Aranda, and Schofield; Ms Lotfi-Jam; Mr Baravelli; and Mss Grogan, King, and Shaw); Faculty of Medicine, Dentistry and Health Sciences, University of Melbourne (Drs Jefford, Krishnasamy, Milne, Aranda, and Schofield; Ms Lotfi-Jam); Cancer Information and Support Services, The Cancer Council Victoria, Melbourne (Dr Jefford and Ms Grogan); Division of Haematology andMedical Oncology, Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre, East Melbourne (DrsJefford and Pezaro); and Division of Surgical Oncology, Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre, East Melbourne (Ms Rogers), Victoria, Australia.

Funding for this study was provided by the Peter MacCallum Cancer Foundation.

Correspondence: Michael Jefford, PhD, Division of Haematology and Medical Oncology, Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre, Locked Bag 1, A'Beckett St, Victoria 8006, Australia (Michael.Jefford@petermac.org).

Accepted for publication July 15, 2010.

© 2011 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.