Patient-centered cancer treatment planning: Improving the quality of oncology care. summary of an institute of medicine workshop

Erin P. Balogh, Patricia A. Ganz, Sharon B. Murphy, Sharyl J. Nass, Betty R. Ferrell, Ellen Stovall

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

76 Scopus citations


The Institute of Medicine's National Cancer Policy Forum recently convened a workshop on patient-centered cancer treatment planning, with the aim of raising awareness about this important but often overlooked aspect of cancer treatment. A primary goal of patientcentered treatment planning is to engage patients and their families in meaningful, thorough interactions with their health care providers to develop an accurate, wellconceived treatment plan, using all available medical information appropriately while also considering the medical, social, and cultural needs and desires of the patient and family. A cancer treatment plan can be shared among the patient, family, and care team in order to facilitate care coordination and provide a roadmap to help patients navigate the path of cancer treatment. There are numerous obstacles to achieving patient-centered cancer treatment planning in practice. Some of these challenges stem from the patient and include patients' lack of assertiveness, health literacy, and numeracy, and their emotional state and concurrent illnesses. Others are a result of physician limitations, such as a lack of time to explain complex information and a lack of tools to facilitate treatment planning, as well as insensitivity to patients' informational, cultural, and emotional needs. Potential solutions to address these obstacles include better training of health care providers and patients in optimal communication and shared decision making, and greater use of support services and tools such as patient navigation and electronic health records. Other options include greater use of quality metrics and reimbursement for the time it takes to develop, discuss, and document a treatment plan.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1800-1805
Number of pages6
Issue number12
StatePublished - 2011
Externally publishedYes


  • Communication
  • Health literacy
  • Oncology
  • Patient-centered care
  • Physician-patient relations

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


Dive into the research topics of 'Patient-centered cancer treatment planning: Improving the quality of oncology care. summary of an institute of medicine workshop'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this