Supportive care needs of women with breast cancer in rural Scotland

Gill Hubbard, Christine Venning, Alison Walker, Karen Scanlon, Richard G. Kyle

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

12 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Purpose
The aim of this study was to identify the supportive care needs and unmet needs of women with breast cancer (BC) in rural Scotland.
Methods
In 2013, a survey of supportive care needs of rural women with BC was conducted using the short-form Supportive Care Needs Survey (SCNS-SF34). Semi-structured interviews were subsequently conducted with a purpose sample of questionnaire respondents.
Results
Forty-four women with BC completed the survey and ten were interviewed. Over half of participants reported at least one moderate to high unmet need (56.8 %, n = 25), a tenth reported low needs (11.4 %, n = 5), and around a third reported no unmet needs for all 34 items (31.8 %, n = 14). The most prevalent moderate to high needs were ‘being informed about cancer in remission’ (31.8 %, n = 14), ‘fears about the cancer spreading’ (27.3 %, n = 12), ‘being adequately informed about the benefits and side-effects of treatment’ and ‘concerns about the worries of those close to you’ (both 25.0 %, n = 11). Interviews highlighted the following unmet needs: information about treatment and side effects, overview of care, fear of recurrence, impact on family and distance from support.
Conclusions
Rural women with BC report similar unmet needs to their urban counterparts. Fear of recurrence is a key unmet need that should be addressed for all women with BC. However, they also report unique unmet needs because of rural location. Thus, it is critical that cancer services address the additional unmet needs of rural women with BC and, in particular, needs relating to distance from services.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1523-1532
JournalSupportive Care in Cancer
Volume23
Issue number6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2015

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