Breast Cancer Survivors Prefer Webinars for Post-Treatment Education

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(ChemotherapyAdvisor) – Breast cancer survivors seeking post-treatment information prefer one-on-one consultation with a clinician followed by topic-specific online webinars that include live question-and-answer sessions, according to authors of a study presented during the 2013 Breast Cancer Symposium held in San Francisco, CA.

“As part of a multidisciplinary approach to breast cancer survivorship care, webinars are a feasible modality to deliver quality health information,” reported Elissa Thorner Bantug, MHS, and coauthors at the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, Sidney Kimmel Comprehensive Cancer Center, in Baltimore, MD.

The authors advertised three 1-hour webinars (at no cost) on social media outlets, print fliers, e-mails, newsletters, advocacy networks and patient support groups, between September 2012 and April 2013. The 30-minute webinar lectures described “next steps after breast cancer treatment,” “integrative medicine,” and “nutrition.” Each was followed by a live online questions-and-answers session. After completing a webinar, a total of 728 participants were asked to complete a nine-item questionnaire.

“Participants self-identified as a cancer survivor (71%), provider (20%), caregiver (8%), or other (2%),” Dr. Bantug and colleagues reported. “Among the 184 (25%) who completed the post-webinar survey, 86% reported that information was relevant to their situation, 85% said they had the opportunity to ask questions, 94% felt the speakers were knowledgeable, and 90% were satisfied with the information quality.”

One-on-one care followed by webinar was the first-ranked preference among participants for the communication of survivorship information. Participants preferred this approach over videos, websites, and pamphlets, the authors noted.

The study's results might apply to more-educated patients with cancer who are comfortable with webinar participation, the authors cautioned. “Nevertheless, data suggest that this format may allow us to reach a diverse audience that appears receptive and satisfied with survivorship education provided in an electronic format,” they concluded.

A total of 681 participants participated from sites in the United States; another 47 joined from 21 other countries, the authors reported.

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