Florida initiative for quality cancer care: Changes in psychosocial quality of care indicators over a 3-year interval

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date



Journal of Oncology Practice








Copyright © 2015 by American Society of Clinical Oncology. All rights reserved. Purpose: Identifying and addressing psychosocial concerns is increasingly recognized as an important aspect of cancer care that needs to be improved. As part of the Florida Initiative for Quality Cancer Care, medical record reviews were conducted to evaluate cancer care, including psychosocial care, at oncology practices in Florida in 2006. Results were subsequently disseminated to the practices, and performance was reassessed at the same practices in 2009. Methods: Data were available for patients with colorectal, breast, and non-small-cell lung cancer first seen by a medical oncologist in 2006 (n = 1,609) and 2009 (n = 1,720) at the same 10 practice sites. Performance on each psychosocial indicator was evaluated for overall change over time and for variability in change based on practice site and cancer type. Results: The percentage of patients identified as having a problem in emotional well-being increased significantly over time, from 24% to 31% among those assessed (P = .002) and from 13% to 16% overall (P = .026). In contrast, there no significant changes over time in assessment of emotional well-being (53% to 51%, P = .661) or in action taken to address problems (57% to 45%, P = .098). Conclusion: Findings suggest more intensive efforts than audit and feedback will be required to improve the quality of psychosocial care and that greater recognition of problems with emotional well-being may tax the ability of practices to link patients with appropriate services. Systematic research is needed to identify and disseminate effective strategies for implementing routine assessment of well-being and addressing the increased demands for care this will generate.