Palliative and supportive interventions to improve patient-reported outcomes in rural residents with cancer


Palliative care and supportive oncology are designed to increase the quality of life and other important patient-reported outcomes (PROs) for people with advanced cancer. People living in rural areas have limited access to these supportive services and the impact of palliative care and supportive oncology on this population is not well studied. The objective of this systematic review is to identify publications that evaluated effects of palliative care and supportive oncology interventions on various PROs in people with advanced cancer in rural areas. Systematic search was conducted in Psych INFO, CINHAL, PubMed and Scopus. The databases were searched up to December 2016. Eight studies were included in this systematic review. The studies identified consisted primarily of small sample sizes, single-group designs, and were not powered to detect impact on PROs. However, these studies did provide preliminary evidence that palliative care and supportive oncology interventions may have a positive effect on physical and emotional symptoms as well as overall QoL in this population. In addition, these interventions were positively viewed by participants and have the potential to have a positive impact on financial outcomes for the individuals and the society.

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