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Patients with cancer want more research into palliative and end of life care

Palliative and end of life care should be top priorities for future research, a new study suggests. 

Palliative and end of life care should be top priorities for future research, a new study suggests. 


Cancer patients said the management of anxiety and uncertainty following treatment
should be a priority for future research. Picture: iStock 

In the first ever study of its kind, funded by the UK Oncology Nursing Society, researchers from the University of Surrey surveyed 50 oncology nurses and 18 patients with cancer. 

Patients also identified cognitive changes associated with cancer treatment as a future research priority, while oncology nurses said the use of eHealth and technology to manage cancer symptoms at home should be a significant area for research. 

Patient opinions

Nurses and patients agreed that factors affecting the early presentation of cancer symptoms should be an important area of future research, and both parties said the availability of psychosocial support services across the cancer pathway and the management of anxiety and uncertainty following cancer treatment should be prioritised. 

Study author professor Emma Ream from the University of Surrey said: 'Our study demonstrates the importance of seeking the opinions of cancer patients, as what they consider important may not mirror what the profession considers a priority. 

'Too often the voice of cancer patients is unheard, but if services are to improve we should listen to the very people they are affecting.'


Cox A et al (2017) Establishing Priorities for Oncology Nursing Research: Nurse and Patient Collaboration. Oncology Nursing Forum. doi: 10.1188/17.ONF.192-203

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