Cancer follow-up care continues to evolve to incorporate complex programs of supportive care to address long-term disease consequences. However, care may be prescriptive and fragmented, contributing to uncertainty among cancer survivors. As major stakeholders in follow-up care for cancer survivors, nurses are ideally positioned to ensure supportive care is person-centred and responsive to patients’ needs. We recently conducted a study to summarize the evidence related to cancer survivors’ preferences for supportive care and examine the ways in which these preferences are embedded in current guidelines and policies informing cancer survivorship care. This presentation discusses specific implications of these findings for oncology nursing.
Phase 1 of the study comprises an integrative review of the empirical literature regarding cancer survivors’ preferences for supportive care, with literature sourced from bibilographic databases and analysed according to principles of thematic analysis. In Phase 2, clinical practice guidelines and policy documents guiding supportive care in cancer survivorship are evaluated using content analysis methods to ascertain alignment with the findings of Phase 1. Finally, we conduct a critical analysis of the results through the lens of oncology nursing practice.
Findings of the integrative review and content analysis of practice and policy guidelines highlight issues related to where and when supportive care is accessed and the types and features of supportive care services. Given that these gaps intersect with nursing practice, they serve as potential targets of knowledge translation activities. Impacts on survivors’ experiences are illustrated with exemplars derived from recent qualitative studies conducted in Canadian and Irish contexts.
As novel programs are developed to meet the needs of the growing population of cancer survivors, a consideration of survivors’ preferences is essential. We offer specific ways in which nursing practice and scholarship can be leveraged to ensure the translation of this knowledge into care, making visible the survivors’ voice in this process.
Clinical trial identification
Legal entity responsible for the study
Has not received any funding.
All authors have declared no conflicts of interest.