BEST PRACTICES FOR CLINICAL SURVIVORSHIP PROGRAMS

The GWCI team shared its best practices for clinical survivorship programs, which they developed from surveying participants who attended Executive Training on Navigation and Survivorship and from surveys on best practices.

  • Conduct a needs assessment, which may be more feasible than you think.
  • Identify a champion who can advocate for your program.
  • Communicate early and often with stakeholders, who may include physicians, administrators, marketing representatives, registrars, the information technology department, and others.
  • Start where you are and set realistic goals.
  • Determine your evaluation plan from the very beginning to help you refine and, if necessary, justify your program.
  • Create a business plan that describes your program and its goals clearly.
  • Talk with others who have survivorship programs up and running. There is no reason to reinvent the wheel, and sharing tips is the best way to spread knowledge on best practices in survivorship.


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Kathy Boltz is a medical writer based in Phoenix, Arizona. 


REFERENCES

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2. Oeffinger KC, Hudson MM, Mertens AC, et al. Increasing rates of breast cancer and cardiac surveillance among high-risk survivors of childhood Hodgkin lymphoma following a mailed, one-page survivorship care plan. Pediatr Blood Cancer. 2011;56(5):818-824.

3. Jefford M, Lotfi-Jam K, Baravelli C, et al. Development and pilot testing of a nurse-led posttreatment support package for bowel cancer survivors. Cancer Nurs. 2011;34(3):E1-E10.

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5. Forsythe LP, Parry C, Alfano CM, et al. Gaps in survivorship care plan delivery and potential benefits to survivorship care. Paper presented at: 2013 ASCO Annual Meeting; May 31-June 4, 2013; Chicago, IL. Abstract 9594. http://abstracts2.asco.org/AbstView_132_112296.html. Accessed August 19, 2014.

6. Rechis R, Bann C, Nutt S, et al. Who is receiving survivorship care plans? Findings from the 2012 LiveSTRONG survey. Poster presented at 2013 ASCO Annual Meeting; May 31-June 4, 2013; Chicago, IL. http://meetinglibrary.asco.org/content/88630. Accessed August 19, 2014.

7. Webber K, Girgis A, Bennett BK, et al. The unmet needs of cancer survivors and their preferences for discussing them with oncologists and general practitioners (GPs). Paper presented at: 2013 ASCO Annual Meeting; May 31-June 4, 2013; Chicago, IL. Abstract 9602. http://meetinglibrary.asco.org/content/116025-132. Accessed August 19, 2014.

8. Institute of Medicine and National Research Council. From Cancer Patient to Cancer Survivor: Lost in Transition. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press; 2005.