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Survivors receiving nurse-led intervention more satisfied with care

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The addition of a nurse-led intervention to the usual care of patients living beyond colorectal cancer did not affect the key outcomes of distress, quality of life or unmet needs; nevertheless, those receiving the care package reported greater satisfaction with post-treatment survivorship care.

This Australian study evaluated the effect of the nurse-led supportive care package (SurvivorCare) for survivors of colorectal cancer at 18 sites across three states.

The intervention package comprised four elements:

  • Educational materials, such as a DVD and a question prompt list covering key issues for survivors of cancer.
  • An individualised, 60-minute end of treatment discussion examining common issues for those surviving cancer and healthy living after treatment.
  • A survivorship care plan, which was shared with patients primary care physicians.
  • Nurse-led telephone follow up.

Data from 216 participants were evaluated; 110

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The addition of a nurse-led intervention to the usual care of patients living beyond colorectal cancer did not affect the key outcomes of distress, quality of life or unmet needs; nevertheless, those receiving the care package reported greater satisfaction with post-treatment survivorship care.

nurse phone
Nurse-led supportive care. Picture: iStock

This Australian study evaluated the effect of the nurse-led supportive care package (SurvivorCare) for survivors of colorectal cancer at 18 sites across three states.

The intervention package comprised four elements:

  • Educational materials, such as a DVD and a question prompt list covering key issues for survivors of cancer.
  • An individualised, 60-minute end of treatment discussion examining common issues for those surviving cancer and healthy living after treatment.
  • A survivorship care plan, which was shared with patients’ primary care physicians.
  • Nurse-led telephone follow up.

Data from 216 participants were evaluated; 110 in the usual care group and 106 receiving the supportive care package.

The authors note the low baseline distress levels in the study population, which they suggest might account for the lower than expected effect response.

The authors suggest the intervention might have more of an effect in a more targeted population, such as those with higher levels of distress or more unmet needs.


Jefford M, Gough K, Drosdowsky A et al (2016) A randomized controlled trial of a nurse-led supportive care package (SurvivorCare) for survivors of colorectal cancer. The Oncologist. 21, 8, 1014-1023.

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