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HePaC: towards an optimal integration of palliative care for patients with haematolo-gic cancer

Starting date

September 2022

Abstract project

In this project our aim is to develop a feasible model for the early integration of palliative care in the trajectory of patients with haematological malignancies (Haematology and palliative care: HePaC). Recent studies (e.g. RCTs) have shown that integrating early palliative care in the trajectory of patients with solid tumours leads to an increase in quality of life of the patients and their family caregivers and to less aggressive care in the last days or weeks of life. Because of the prognostic complexity of haematological cancers and the heterogeneity in manifestation of the disease and treatment options, thorough research on this specific patient population is needed to develop a new or adapted model for the early integration of palliative care. A systematic literature research will be conducted as a first step to identify existing barriers and facilitators for the early integration of palliative care in haematology. Secondly, interviews with patients with haematological cancers, family caregivers, haematologists, psychologists, palliative care specialists, etc. will give insight into current experiences with and attitudes towards early palliative care. The results of step 1 and 2 will then be used to create a model which will be discussed with experts and stakeholders focusing on the feasibility and acceptability of the model, completeness of the model and expected barriers for implementation. In the last step the model will be evaluated in patients with haematological cancer on feasibility, acceptability and its effect on patients’ and family caregivers’ outcome measures.



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Project team

Naomi Dhollander, Kim Beernaert, Koen Pardon, Luc Deliens, Rik Schots (UZ Brussel), Fabienne Trullemans (UZ Brussel), Tessa Kerre (UZ Gent), Gaëlle Vanbutsele (UZ Gent)

Researcher: Sophie Hochrath