Research on using patient questionnaires to find out what palliative care patients want and how they are experiencing their treatment and care will start at the Primary Care Unit’s Palliative and End of Life Care Research group this month, thanks to a grant from Marie Curie.
Patient questionnaires to collect patient-centred outcome measures can help improve quality of care but they appear to be rarely used routinely in palliative care. The new research will be a systematic review of published research on the implementation of such questionnaires in palliative care clinical practice.
The University of Cambridge team will be led by Dr Bárbara Antunes, who performed the original systematic review on this topic back in 2013. The 2013 review will now be updated as part of the new research, which will be conducted by Dr Farhad Shokraneh (see below).
It’s a fast-moving field and the importance of using patient questionnaires to understand the effect of health interventions has been growing so the team expect the update to yield plenty of new information.
Dr Antunes said: “We’ll be updating our 2013 review of published research on what helps and what gets in the way of using patient reported outcome measures in palliative care clinical practice. We’ll be able to see what lessons can be learned and what implementation models have been used.”
“This time round, we’ll also be looking at evidence on the costs of implementing those measures and we will include research on questionnaires filled by family members and healthcare professionals, if the patient is not able to fill them in.”
In palliative care, it is equally important to learn not just about physical effects, but also about psychological, existential, emotional and practical ones.”
– Dr Bárbara Antunes, Research Associate, Primary Care Unit
Dr Antunes explained: “We’ve seen this field change and grow exponentially over the last decade. With nearly 9000 views and downloads, the original review has been an important source of information, so I am really pleased that the Marie Curie award allows us to update it.”
Researcher focus: Dr Farhad Shokraneh
Farhad has been a systematic reviewer and information scientist since 2004. He studied medical library and information science for six full years and has worked as a research fellow at Research Center for Pharmaceutical Nanotechnology (Iran), Cochrane Schizophrenia Group (Nottingham), King’s Technology Evaluation Centre (King’s College London), Cochrane Neuromuscular (London), Cochrane Gut (Preston), and Cochrane Heart (UCL) during the last 12 years. In 2020, he was awarded his PhD in Medicine (evidence synthesis) from the University of Nottingham.
He is an enthusiast and methodologist in most types of literature review and evidence synthesis and has led teams to deliver local, national and international projects. In September 2022, he joined PELiCAM, working closely with Bárbara, Professor Stephen Barclay and the project advisory group to lead and deliver the updated systematic review on patient-centred outcome measures in palliative care.
See more about the Palliative and End of Life Care Group in Cambridge (PELiCam)