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BACKGROUND: Although overall and disease-free survival remain the goals of cancer care, health-related quality of life (HRQOL) during and after treatment is increasingly acknowledged as vital to the patient’s outcomes. The purpose of this project was to identify and implement a valid, reliable HRQOL assessment tool into daily clinical practice in an outpatient hematology/oncology clinic at a 25-bed critical access hospital in rural New Hampshire.
METHODS: This project used a methodological design. Descriptive and inferential statistics, plus qualitative analysis were used to determine results. Three nurses and seven patients participated in this quality improvement project.
INTERVENTIONS: The interventions for this project included identifying a valid, reliable HRQOL assessment tool; educating direct care providers on the use of the HRQOL assessment tool; and capturing HRQOL data in the patient’s electronic medical record (EMR).
RESULTS: The FACT-G was identified and implemented into daily clinical practice. Limitations of the licensing agreement prevented the project team from incorporating the FACT-G into the EMR. Three nurses were educated on the use of the FACT-G. Seven patients completed the assessment during the pilot period. Focus group results revealed the FACT-G helped patients identify their symptoms and communicate their needs to providers.
CONCLUSIONS: Implementing a valid, reliable HRQOL assessment tool into daily clinical practice at an outpatient hematology/oncology infusion suite at a critical access hospital in rural New Hampshire was feasible and endorsed by both patients and providers. More data is needed to determine if HRQOL assessments improve outcomes for cancer patients receiving treatment in the outpatient setting.
Holl, Jennifer, "Implementing a Health-Related Quality of Life Assessment Tool in an Outpatient Hematology/Oncology Clinic: A Pilot Quality Improvement Project" (2022). DNP Scholarly Projects. 63.