Multidisciplinary Versus One-on-One Setting: A Qualitative Study of Clinicians' Perceptions of Their Relationship With Patients With Prostate Cancer

Published on Jan 1, 2011in Journal of Oncology Practice3.551
· DOI :10.1200/JOP.2010.000020
Lara Bellardita10
Estimated H-index: 10
Simona Donegani5
Estimated H-index: 5
+ 1 AuthorsRiccardo Valdagni51
Estimated H-index: 51
Purpose: Previous studies indicate that a multidisciplinary approach could be suitable for dealing with the complex issues faced by physicians in the management of prostate cancer; however, few studies have investigated clinicians’ perceptions of multidisciplinary care. Our aim was to evaluate clinicians’ perceptions of the patient-clinician relationship in a multidisciplinary context, and to compare this with physicians’ perceptions of providing care independently. Methods: A qualitative observational study was performed in 2009. Three radiation oncologists, three urologists, three medical oncologists and one psychologist from the multidisciplinary clinic (MDC) team at the Prostate Program of Fondazione IRCCS Istituto Nazionale dei Tumori, Milan, Italy, were interviewed to assess their perceptions of their relationship with the patient. Results: Clinicians reported that the MDC has advantages regarding providing patients with more accurate information and acquiring information from patients, but a clear preference for a multidisciplinary setting did not emerge. Clinicians reported that in one-on-one examinations (1) they feel more comfortable listening to the patient and more able to manage communication, and that (2) the process of building trust is easier. Conclusion: Clinicians appear to recognize the value of the MDC in terms of effective communication with patients but feel that other aspects of relationship building are hindered in a multidisciplinary setting. Organizational and teamwork issues need to be addressed to optimize the implementation of a multidisciplinary approach.
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