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Acta Oncol. 2015 May;54(5):600-8. doi: 10.3109/0284186X.2014.995778. Epub 2015 Mar 9.

Integrated care pathways for cancer survivors - a role for patient-reported outcome measures and health informatics.

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Leeds Institute of Cancer Studies and Pathology, University of Leeds , Leeds , UK.


Modern cancer treatments have improved survival rates and changed the nature of cancer care. The acute and long-term physical and psychosocial comorbidities associated with treatment place increasing demands on healthcare services to provide suitable models of follow-up care for the survivor population.


We discuss the value and challenges of incorporating patient-reported outcome measures (PROMs) and eHealth interventions into routine follow-up care. We draw on our 15 years' experience of developing electronic systems for capturing patient-reported data in oncology settings, with particular reference to eRAPID a new online symptom reporting system for cancer patients. THE REDESIGN OF HEALTHCARE PATHWAYS: New stratified care pathways have been proposed for cancer survivors with an emphasis on supported self-management and shared care. THE POTENTIAL ROLE OF PROMS IN SURVIVORSHIP CARE PATHWAYS: PROMs can be used to evaluate rehabilitation services, provide epidemiological 'Big Data' and screen patients for physical and psychological morbidities to determine the need for further support. In addition, electronic PROMs systems linked to electronic patient records (EPRs) have the capability to provide tailored self-management advice to individual patients. INTEGRATION OF PROMS INTO CLINICAL PRACTICE: The successful clinical utilisation of PROMs is dependent on a number of components including; choosing appropriate questionnaires, developing evidence-based scoring algorithms, the creation of robust electronic platforms for recording and transferring data into EPRs, and training staff and patients to engage effectively with PROMs.


There is increasingly positive evidence for using PROMs and eHealth approaches to support cancer patients' care during treatment. Much of what has been learnt can be applied to cancer survivorship. PROMs integrated into eHealth platforms and with EPR have the potential to play a valuable role in the development of appropriate and sustainable long-term follow-up models for cancer survivors.

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