Prostate cancer is the commonest cancer amongst men in Australia. Men who have completed treatment for prostate cancer require long term follow-up to monitor disease progression and to manage common adverse physical and psychosocial consequences of their treatment. There is growing recognition of the potential role of primary care in cancer follow-up.
This phase II randomised controlled trial of a complex intervention aims to evaluate the effect of a novel model of shared care to reduce unmet needs and psychological distress among men treated for low-intermediate risk prostate cancer.
Methods: Participants are randomised to the intervention or current hospital follow-up. The intervention is a shared care model of follow-up visits in the first 12 months after treatment and includes the following components: a survivorship care plan, GP management guidelines, register and recall systems, screening for distress and unmet needs and patient information resources. Outcome measures collected at baseline, 3, 6 and 12 months include anxiety, depression, unmet needs, prostate cancer-specific quality of life and satisfaction with care. Clinical processes and health care resource usage are also being measured.
Results: Eighty-eight men were randomised into the trial. This represents a patient accrual rate of 65% of eligible men and a 90% accrual rate of their general practitioners. Follow-up will be completed by July 2014. We will present the main results of the trial on psychosocial outcomes.
Conclusions: This is the first trial of shared care for prostate cancer in Australia and the first trial internationally to use the Distress Thermometer and a tailored screening tool for unmet needs in prostate cancer in primary care. It tests the feasibility and acceptability of this novel model of shared care and will inform policy, practice and the potential for future larger trials in this area.