Exploring the acceptability and benefits of group pretreatment consultations for people receiving systemic anticancer therapy
Intended for healthcare professionals
Evidence and practice    

Exploring the acceptability and benefits of group pretreatment consultations for people receiving systemic anticancer therapy

Emma Rowland Lecturer in emotional geographies of healthcare, Florence Nightingale Faculty of Nursing, Midwifery and Palliative Care, King’s College London, London, England
Catherine Oakley Chemotherapy nurse consultant, Guy’s Cancer Centre, Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust, London, England

Why you should read this article:
  • To recognise the importance of effective pretreatment consultations (PTCs) for patients with cancer and their relatives

  • To learn about the potential benefits and disadvantages of group PTCs for patients, relatives and nurses

  • To be aware of the need to explore the feasibility and acceptability of delivering group PTCs in practice

Background Patients with cancer receiving systemic anticancer therapy (SACT) historically attended a one-to-one hospital pretreatment consultation (PTC) with a SACT nurse who provided educational and psychological support. However, these PTCs had limitations for patients, relatives and the SACT nurses delivering them.

Aim To develop a psychosocial and educational group intervention to support the SACT informational needs of patients with cancer and their relatives.

Method A multi-method qualitative study design was adopted. A group PTC was developed through: observations of one-to-one nurse-led PTCs and doctors obtaining patients’ consent for SACT; two focus groups with healthcare professionals (n=12); semi-structured interviews with healthcare professionals (n=6); two focus groups with patients who received SACT (n=10) and their relatives (n=2); and semi-structured interviews with patients who received SACT (n=4). The intervention was presented in a workshop and SACT nurses (n=10) were trained in its delivery.

Findings Overall, the intervention proposal appeared to be received positively by patients, relatives and healthcare professionals. However, questions remained over the feasibility and acceptability of delivering group PTCs.

Conclusion The group PTC seems to be promising, although it requires piloting. Group PTCs are expected to encourage patients and relatives to manage and report symptoms, by promoting family-centred care. It is also anticipated that the group approach will make better use of SACT nurses’ time so they are more available to provide individualised care during treatment administration, while also reducing their emotional labour.

Cancer Nursing Practice. doi: 10.7748/cnp.2023.e1850

Peer review

This article has been subject to external double-blind peer review and checked for plagiarism using automated software

Correspondence

emma.rowland@kcl.ac.uk

Conflict of interest

None declared

Rowland E, Oakley C (2023) Exploring the acceptability and benefits of group pretreatment consultations for people receiving systemic anticancer therapy. Cancer Nursing Practice. doi: 10.7748/cnp.2023.e1850

Acknowledgements

The authors would like to thank Dr Verna Lavender and Amanda Shewbridge for their support in writing this paper. Thank you for providing extensive comment and feedback on drafts of the paper

Published online: 21 November 2023

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