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Evaluating information needs of families and patients receiving cancer chemotherapy

Nursing Research at Mount Sinai
Name of Research Area

Evaluating information needs of families and patients receiving cancer chemotherapy.


Julie Tjan, Principal Investigator & Christina Copplestone, Co-Investigator

Description of Research

Evaluating current educational resources available to oncology patients and their families is the first step in identifying patient and family-specific informational concerns rather than those preconceived by health care professionals. Providing relevant information to people undergoing cancer treatment and their families can help patients gain a greater sense of control over their illness experience and decrease anxiety by addressing myths and fears surrounding cancer treatment. As a result, patients can be empowered to optimize their health and well-being through increased knowledge of their treatment and greater self-involvement in their care.

Our proposed research endeavor is to conduct a population-specific information satisfaction assessment among the inpatient chemotherapy population of Mount Sinai Hospital, to determine if our patients’ and their families’ informational needs are being met through current staff teachings and educational materials (i.e. pamphlets, information booklets).

A modified questionnaire based on the Information Satisfaction Questionnaire, ISQÓ has been distributed to primary care givers and patients who have received chemotherapy as an inpatient on 11 South. The questionnaire has been modified, with the author's permission, to best reflect the cancer care pathway of the inpatient oncology population admitted to Mt. Sinai Hospital.

In addition to the ISQ©, which utilizes a Likert scale method of evaluation, participants will be asked the following questions:

  • What was the most helpful information you received?
  • What was the least helpful information you received?
  • Please list, in order of importance, any suggestions on how we can improve our information provided to patients and families.

These open-ended questions will help researchers further identify family and patient-specific informational needs and help researchers implement effective patient and family-based education interventions based upon the collected data analysis.

Our goal is to ensure oncology patients as well as their families are well informed of chemotherapy treatment and side effects utilizing both verbal and written educational means. Pending the results of the survey, further implementation of additional educational interventions, materials, or a standardized educational program will be explored. As a result of increased patient knowledge and education regarding chemotherapy processes we anticipate an increase in family and patient satisfaction and safety.

Contact Information

Julie Tjan RN, MN
Nurse Clinician
416 586 4800 ext. 2812