Implementation of Electronic Patient-Reported Outcomes in Routine Cancer Care at an Academic Center: Identifying Opportunities and Challenges.
PURPOSE: Electronic patient-reported outcomes (ePROs) can help clinicians proactively assess and manage their patients' symptoms. Despite known benefits, there is limited adoption of ePROs into routine clinical care as a result of workflow and technologic challenges. This study identifies oncologists' perspectives on factors that affect integration of ePROs into clinical workflows. METHODS: We conducted semistructured qualitative interviews with 16 oncologists from a large academic medical center, across diverse subspecialties and cancer types. Oncologists were asked how they currently use or could imagine using ePROs before, during, and after a patient visit. We used an inductive approach to thematically analyze these qualitative data. RESULTS: Results were categorized into the following three main themes: (1) selection and development of ePRO tool, (2) contextual drivers of adoption, and (3) patient-facing concerns. Respondents preferred diagnosis-based ePRO tools over more general symptom screeners. Although they noted information overload as a potential barrier, respondents described strong data visualization and ease of use as facilitators. Contextual drivers of oncologist adoption include identifying target early adopters, incentivizing uptake through use of ePRO data to support billing and documentation, and emphasizing benefits for patient care and efficiency. Respondents also indicated the need to focus on patient-facing issues, such as patient response rate, timing of survey distribution, and validity and reliability of responses. DISCUSSION: Respondents identified several barriers and facilitators to successful uptake of ePROs. Understanding oncologists' perspectives is essential to inform both practice-level implementation strategies and policy-level decisions to include ePROs in alternative payment models for cancer care.
Sandhu, S; King, Z; Wong, M; Bissell, S; Sperling, J; Gray, M; Ratliff, W; Herring, K; LeBlanc, TW
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