Although the intervention sorted no relevant effects on health-related quality of life, it did affect patients' experience of cancer care and self-efficacy. We recommend that patient navigators monitor and advise on unmet supportive care needs, but only in the case of high-risk patients. Furthermore, considering current and prior research, it is wise to study patient navigation using more sensitive outcome measures than health-related quality of life.
In the case of health-related quality of life, no significant difference was observed between the intervention (n = 42) and the control group (n = 47). Consumption of supportive cancer care was low for both the intervention and the control group but relatively lower for the intervention group. Also, participants who consulted the patient navigator seemed to have higher levels of self-efficacy and satisfaction.
Patients newly diagnosed with ovarian, vulvar, endometrial, melanoma stage III/IV, lung, or renal cancer were randomly assigned to either care as usual or care as usual plus consultations with a patient navigator (i.e., specially trained oncology nurse who monitors, advises, and refers patients to supportive cancer care). Measures included the EORTC-QLQ-C30, distress thermometer, and study-specific questions inspired by the Symptom-Management Self-Efficacy Scale Breast Cancer, Patient Satisfaction with Cancer Care Scale, and the Medical Consumption Questionnaire. Measures were completed before randomization (baseline) and at 1 month, 3 months, and 5 months after baseline.
This study aimed to determine the effect of patient navigation on health-related quality of life, distress, self-care knowledge, self-efficacy, satisfaction, and healthcare usage.