Understanding and satisfaction in a cohort of West of Scotland cancer patients: A quantitative and qualitative survey in the Beatson Oncology Hospital


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Aishah Coyte1, Noelle O’Rourke2
1University of Glasgow Undergraduate Medical School, Glasgow, UK, 2West of Scotland Beatson Cancer Centre, Glasgow, UK

Background

Studies have shown that patients are happy with the amount and content of information provided by physicians; when questioned they show poor understanding about aspects of their diagnosis and care.The GMC acknowledge that no single approach to treatment discussion will suit everyone. In order to gain insight into patient behaviours this project looked into the understanding and satisfaction levels of current patients at a Glasgow oncology hospital.

Method

Between the 28th August 2012 and 22nd September 2012 thirteen in-patients, randomly selected by doctors on ward, at the Beatson Cancer Centre were interviewed. A structured questionnaire was used to frame the interview; a semi structured interview approach was used. Comments were noted verbatim. Patient notes were used to source: cancer diagnosis, stage of disease, date of diagnosis, management plan or postcode. Analyses were performed using SPSS 18.0.

Results

69.2% felt very informed about their cancer and 76.9% very informed about their treatment. 53.8% were very satisfied with the amount of information they had on their cancer and 84.6% very satisfied with the amount of information on their treatment. 15.4% wanted more information on their condition. Cancer site was significantly associated with wanting more information on a diagnosis (Fisher's exact test; p= 0.042) with haematoligical and head and neck cancers showing a stronger want for more information. Patient information leaflets were the favoured research source and non Beatson hospital doctors were the best source for information.

Conclusion

The majority of patients were satisfied with the amount of information they were given and the sources available. Further work is needed to investigate the associations between patient characteristics and information preferences in order to design effective interventions. These interventions will help ensure that appropriate amounts of information are given to patients and that it is delivered effectively; consequently delivering patient satisfaction and truly informed consent.