Objectives Few interventions have been designed that provide standardised information to primary care clinicians about the diagnostic and treatment recommendations resulting from cancer multidisciplinary team (MDT) (tumour board) meetings. This study aimed to develop, implement and evaluate a standardised template for lung cancer MDTs to provide clinical information and treatment recommendations to general practitioners (GPs). Specific objectives were to (1) evaluate template feasibility (acceptability, appropriateness and timeliness) with GPs and (2) document processes of preimplementation, implementation and evaluation within the MDT setting.
Design A mixed-method study design using structured interviews with GPs and qualitative documentation of project logs about implementation processes.
Setting Two hospitals in Central Sydney, New South Wales, Australia. Participants: 61 GPs evaluated the template. Two lung cancer MDTs, consisting of 33 clinicians, and eight researchers participated in template development and implementation strategy.
Results The MDT-reporting template appears to be a feasible way of providing clinical information to GPs following patient presentation at a lung cancer MDT meeting. Ninety-five per cent of GPs strongly agreed or agreed that the standardised template provided useful and relevant information, that it was received in a timely manner (90%) and that the information was easy to interpret and communicate to the patient (84%). Implementation process data show that the investment made in the preimplementation stage to integrate the template into standard work practices was a critical factor in successful implementation.
Conclusions This study demonstrates that it is feasible to provide lung cancer MDT treatment recommendations to GPs through implementation of a standardised template. A simple intervention, such as a standardised template, can help to address quality gaps and ensure that timely information is communicated between tertiary and primary care healthcare providers.
- respiratory tract tumours
- primary care
- organisation of health services
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Contributors This study was proposed by DJB, TJS and NMR. NMR wrote the first draft of the manuscript and contributions were made by DJB, GKC, CMB, TJS, KMW, PJB, LJT and CA. DJB and PJB are clinical leaders at the participating sites. Project implementation was overseen by NMR and TJS. GKC undertook all project management tasks, including ethics and governance approvals, data collection and liaison with the Information Management and Technology Division. GKC and CMB were responsible for sending out templates and liaising with primary care practices with clinical oversight by DJB. Primary care clinical advice for template design was provided by LJT. KMW and CA provided strategic advice about jurisdictional cancer control issues. All authors approved the final draft of the manuscript.
Funding This work was supported by Cancer Australia as part of the NSW Collaboration of the Lung Cancer Demonstration Project (LCDP). The LCDP is an initiative of Cancer Australia, funded by the Australian Government.
Disclaimer The study funder, Cancer Australia, had no role in the study design; the collection, analysis and interpretation of data; or in the decision to submit the article for publication.
Competing interests None declared.
Ethics approval Ethics approval for this project was obtained from the Sydney Local Health District Human Research Ethics Committee (LNRSSA/15/RPAH/236) and site-specific local governance approvals were granted prior to project commencement.
Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.
Data sharing statement No additional data are available.
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