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Eur J Cancer Care (Engl). 2011 May;20(3):345-53. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2354.2010.01188.x.

Cutting the research pie: a value-weighting approach to explore perceptions about psychosocial research priorities for adults with haematological cancers.

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School of Medicine and Public Health, Health Behaviour Research Group, University of Newcastle, Callaghan, NSW 2038, Australia.


Despite the burden of illness associated with haematological cancers, little research is available about improving psychosocial outcomes for this group. Given scarce research funds, it is important to ensure that resources are used strategically for improving their psychosocial well-being. This study aimed to identify the perceptions of professionals, patients and carers regarding prioritising psychosocial research efforts. First, an expert panel's views on priorities for research were identified. This was followed by a web survey to obtain the perceptions of 117 health professionals, patients and carers. The value-weighting survey used points allocation, allowing respondents to indicate the relative priority of each option. A substantial proportion of resources were allocated to patients who were newly diagnosed or receiving treatment. Less priority was given to other stages of the cancer journey or non-patient populations. There was no indication that any type of psychosocial research was a priority; however, some differences were identified when comparing the priorities of the three respondent groups. To improve psychosocial outcomes for haematological cancer patients, resources should be directed towards patients in the early stages of the cancer journey. There may be a need for research investigating potential interventions to improve psychosocial outcomes for patients with haematological cancers.

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