Cancer Information & Support qualitative study.

ICISG Board Directors are proud to announce a co-authored qualitative study published in the Journal of Supportive Care in Cancer last month entitled, Exploring the rationale, experience and impact of using Cancer Information and Support (CIS) services: an international qualitative study. Authored by board directors Anna Boltong (Cancer Council Victoria, Australia); Kevin Babb (American Cancer Society, USA) and Martin Ledwick (Cancer Research UK) and colleagues, the paper describes the outcomes of an evaluation of the user experience of nurse-led cancer information and support helplines across three organisations.

This world first study analysed service user interviews to reveal three global themes: i) Drivers for access: A sense of needing information, ‘trueness’ or support to be able to move on; ii) Experience: What the service user was met with and what they came away with; iii) Impact: What the service or the interaction with the nurse resulted in or enabled. The study clearly showed that CIS nurses act as navigators, educators and therapeutic communicators to enable callers to better understand and contextualise their situation and the support options available to them. Service use enhanced confidence and competence to manage own health and get the most from the healthcare team.  This study generated new evidence in the form of 24 dimensions of benefit of using a nurse led CIS helpline. CIS services are now able to be more consistently evaluated according to these defined dimensions of benefit.


Submitted by:

Anna Boltong, Head of Cancer Information and Support Service, Cancer Council Victoria