A feasibility study to examine a nurse practitioner-led intervention to provide supportive care for gynecological cancer survivors
What? The transition from treatment into surveillance care can be challenging and stressful for cancer survivors. In particular, gynecological cancer (GC) survivors often have significantly heightened distress at the end of primary treatment. Given the range of difficulties that women identify to manage their cancer-related needs, and the potential for nurses to support GC survivors with this transition, this research explores the degree to which supportive care needs can be alleviated by attending an NP-led intervention.
Participants will have a visit with a gynecology oncology NP who will review their treatment history, anticipated short- and long-term side effects, and recommended surveillance schedule. The NP will also discuss strategies to manage cancer-related needs specific to those identified by the GC survivor.
Why? In our former research, GC survivors suggested that additional support might help them cope with the transition from treatment to surveillance. Our team also conducted a scoping review to identify the diverse needs of GC survivors and their caregivers. These former projects, in addition to multidisciplinary expertise and professional resources, have been used to inform the content of the NP-led intervention to be examined in the current study.
How? This study employs qualitative and quantitative assessments in a mixed method design. Study outcomes will be assessed by: a 1:1 interview to explore the feasibility and acceptability of the intervention and suggestions for improvement, and; the Cancer Survivors’ Unmet Needs measure will be used to assess the potential effectiveness of the intervention to meet the supportive care needs of GC survivors over time (e.g., pre-intervention, and 3-, 6-, and 12-months after).
Impact of findings: Results of this study can be used to support the development of individualized post-treatment care for cancer survivors and their caregivers. Furthermore, study results can be used to provide oncology clinicians with guidance about the mode of delivering end of treatment transition care, as well as content useful to meet the supportive care needs of GC survivors.