274021 Patient's beliefs and attitudes about participating in cancer clinical trials

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Carolina Puyana , Department of Epidemiology and Public Health, University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, Miami, FL
Stacey L. Tannenbaum, PhD, RD, LD/N , Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center, University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, Miami, FL
Maria D. Garcia , Department of Epidemiology and Public Health, University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, Miami, FL
Margaret Byrne, PhD , Dept. of Epidemiology and Public Health, University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, Miami, FL
Background: Cancer patient beliefs can affect attitudes and subsequent willingness to participate in cancer clinical trials (CCT), according to the theory of reasoned action. Since generalizability of CCT is dependent on adequate participation, the objective of this study was to determine what attitudes patients have about CCT and how they are influenced by beliefs. Methods: A cross-sectional survey design from the Florida Cancer Data System registry was utilized (N=1,100). Behavioral beliefs (BB; beliefs about consequences of participation) and normative beliefs (NB; what participants believe others think) were examined via a telephone questionnaire. Means and standard deviations (SD) of each belief, strength of belief, and their product (“evaluation of belief” multiplied by “strength of belief”) were rated on a seven-point scale (-3 to +3). Odds ratios (OR) and 95% confidence intervals (CI) were computed for attitude and subjective norms (SN; significance individuals attribute to others' opinions) with logistic regression analyses. Results: For BB, altruistic beliefs were rated of highest importance: “helping others” [mean product: 5.36 (SD 3.55)], “benefiting future patients” [5.34 (3.79)], and “finding if the drug works” [5.34 (3.66)]. For NB, participants reported believing that their surgeon [3.37 (4.11)] and family doctor [2.80 (4.00)] would want them to participate. There was a significant relationship between: (1) BB and attitude [OR=1.25; (CI= 1.11-1.40)], and (2) NB and SN [1.25; (1.11-1.40)]. Discussion: Because altruistic beliefs and physician opinions were most important to patients, physicians should inform patients that joining CCT is philanthropic. This doctor/patient communication may result in increased willingness to participate.

Learning Areas:
Clinical medicine applied in public health
Provision of health care to the public
Public health or related research
Social and behavioral sciences
Systems thinking models (conceptual and theoretical models), applications related to public health

Learning Objectives:
Evaluate what attitudes patients have about participation in cancer clinical trials Explain how attitudes are influenced by their beliefs and external pressures List beliefs that cancer patients have about clinical trials

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am qualified because I have been working as an Assistant Scientist under 4 cancer grants related to this topic and have many years of experience in research, statistical analysis, publications, and presentations including at the last 3 APHA meetings.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.