Optimising the cancer patient journey

Dalby, Melanie (2022) Optimising the cancer patient journey. (PhD thesis), Kingston University, .


This thesis describes the research undertaken by the author from the beginning of 2017 up until the end of 2021. The research started by investigating the support that community pharmacy teams can provide to patients who take oral anti-cancer therapy. This expanded into evaluating the experience of cancer patients at various points throughout their journey, hence the final research question overall is how to optimise the cancer patient journey. The research presented in this thesis provides new evidence to answer this question. The thesis starts by introducing the reader to the journey of a cancer patient, what they may encounter and what it is like to live with and beyond cancer. The history of cancer policy is discussed including the impact this has had. The author’s career history is provided. The first chapter finishes by explaining the structure of the thesis and the aims and objectives. Chapter 2 is devoted to the methodology used throughout the work described in this thesis. The reasons why the methods were used is discussed as well as the philosophy surrounding them. Chapters 3 and 4 provide detail of the two themes that make up this thesis. Chapter 3 takes the reader through the research and studies that were undertaken to determine whether community pharmacists can support patients who take oral anticancer medication and what the model encompasses. Chapter 4 details the studies conducted to explore cancer patient experience which became heavily influenced by the effects of COVID-19. The final chapter summarises the work undertaken to achieve the aim and objectives as set out in the first chapter. The thesis closes with a plan for the author’s future research intentions.

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