A Stakeholder-Driven Qualitative Study to Define High Quality End-of-Life Care for Children With Cancer

Title

A Stakeholder-Driven Qualitative Study to Define High Quality End-of-Life Care for Children With Cancer

Creator

Ananth P; Mun S; Reffat N; Li R; Sedghi T; Avery M; Snaman J; Gross CP; Ma X; Wolfe J

Publisher

Journal of Pain and Symptom Management

Date

2021

Subject

Oncology

Description

Context Among adults with cancer, measures for high quality end-of-life care (EOLC) include avoidance of hospitalizations near end of life. For children with cancer, no measures exist to evaluate or improve EOLC, and adult quality measures may not apply. Objective We engaged key stakeholders to explore EOLC priorities for children with cancer and their families, and to examine relevance of existing adult EOLC quality measures for children with cancer. Methods In a multicenter qualitative study, we conducted interviews and focus groups with: adolescents and young adults (AYAs) with advanced cancer, parents of children with advanced cancer, bereaved parents, and interdisciplinary healthcare professionals. We transcribed, coded, and employed thematic analysis to summarize findings. Results We enrolled 54 stakeholders (25 parents [including 12 bereaved parents], 10 AYAs, and 19 healthcare professionals). Participants uniformly prioritized direct communication with children about preferences and prognosis, interdisciplinary care, symptom management, and honoring family preference for location of death. Many participants valued access to the emergency department or hospital for symptom management or supportive care, which diverges from measures for high quality EOLC in adults. Most wished to avoid mechanical ventilation and cardiopulmonary resuscitation. Notably, participants generally valued hospice; however, few understood hospice care or had utilized its services. Conclusion Childhood cancer stakeholders define high quality EOLC primarily through person-centered measures, characterizing half of existing adult-focused measures as limited in relevance to children. Future research should focus on developing techniques for person-centered quality measurement to capture attributes of greatest importance to children with cancer and their families.

Rights

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Citation List Month

2021 Special Edition - Oncology

Citation

Ananth P; Mun S; Reffat N; Li R; Sedghi T; Avery M; Snaman J; Gross CP; Ma X; Wolfe J, “A Stakeholder-Driven Qualitative Study to Define High Quality End-of-Life Care for Children With Cancer,” Pediatric Palliative Care Library, accessed July 18, 2024, https://pedpalascnetlibrary.omeka.net/items/show/18958.