Hospital-based Home Care for Children With Cancer
The purpose of this non-randomized controlled intervention study was to evaluate the effects of a hospital-based home care program for children with cancer at a university hospital in Denmark. The hypothesis was that hospital-based home care could replace an out-patient visit or an in-patient admission without increasing the incidence of adverse events and costs. Furthermore, to enhance the children's quality of life and the psychosocial impact on the family.
|Study Design:||Endpoint Classification: Safety/Efficacy Study
Intervention Model: Single Group Assignment
Masking: Open Label
Primary Purpose: Supportive Care
|Official Title:||Hospital-based Home Care for Children With Cancer|
- Number of adverse events [ Time Frame: 17 months ] [ Designated as safety issue: Yes ]At each home visit, the hospital-based home care nurse recorded details on the HBHC visits and safety according to the mandatory hospital guidelines for registrations of adverse events such as acute deteriorations of the general condition, and any medical errors.
- Costs of the intervention [ Time Frame: 17 months ] [ Designated as safety issue: No ]The costs for the health care service were evaluated by comparing the hospital-based home care related operational e.g. petrol and pay roll costs plus overhead costs, with the billed costs for an out-patient visit or in-patient admission at the hospital.
- Healthrelated quality of life of the child with cancer [ Time Frame: At inclusion and 3 months after ] [ Designated as safety issue: No ]A questionnaire booklet was developed to compare the psychosocial impact on the child and the family with home care and standard care. The child's general health-related quality of life was assessed by the PedsQL 4.0 Generic Core Scale, which consists of four dimensions and a total score of all dimensions is computed as well as a physical and psychosocial summary score. The child's disease-specific health-related quality of life was assessed by the PedsQL 3.0 Cancer Module, which consists of seven dimensions without a total score.
- Psychosocial impact of the family with a child of cancer [ Time Frame: At inclusion and 3 months after ] [ Designated as safety issue: No ]A questionnaire booklet was developed to compare the psychosocial impact on the child and the family with home care and standard care. The psychosocial impact on the family was assessed by PedsQL 2.0 Family Impact Module, which consists of 8 dimensions with a total score as well as the parent's health-related quality of life and family functioning summary score.
- Participants' satisfaction with health care [ Time Frame: At inclusion and 3 months after ] [ Designated as safety issue: No ]A questionnaire booklet was developed to compare the psychosocial impact on the child and the family with home care and standard care. The participants' satisfaction with health care was assessed by PedsQL Healthcare Satisfaction Generic Module measures the parents'/guardians' satisfaction with health care in general in six dimensions: information, inclusion of family, communication, technical skills, emotional needs, and overall satisfaction. A total score of all dimensions is computed.
- Participants' satisfaction with the hospital-based home care program [ Time Frame: 12 months ] [ Designated as safety issue: No ]
A one-page evaluation form to measure the parents' and children's perceptions of security, satisfaction with home care and preference for care was developed with a 5-point Likert- scale ranging from not at all to very much. The parents' also scored overall preference for standard vs. home care was scored with two alternative responses (yes or no) and they were asked whether they would choose a home care visit again instead of a corresponding hospital visit if they had the opportunity.
The evaluation forms were collected after each home visit only during the first 12 months of the program.
|Study Start Date:||August 2008|
|Study Completion Date:||October 2010|
|Primary Completion Date:||December 2009 (Final data collection date for primary outcome measure)|
Experimental: Hospital-based home care
Patients were included if below the age of 18, had been diagnosed with any type of cancer at least one month prior to inclusion, on intravenous anticancer therapy with a curative intent, and the parent was fluent in speaking and reading Danish. Patients living within a radius of 50 kilometres from the hospital were assigned to the home care program. Moreover, patients were assigned to one of three groups according to the geographical distance from the hospital and timing of the inclusion period: (1) home care group if participating in the program, (2) historical standard care group for an eight-month period before the program started regardless of their residence distance from the hospital, and (3) concurrent standard care group if living more than 50 km from the university hospital.
Other: Hospital-based home care
Low-intensive intravenous antibiotics b) intravenous low-toxic chemotherapy c) blood samples drawn from the central venous catheter or peripheral vein d) subcutaneous injections e) nutrition treatment f) pain management (e.g. controlling an intravenous morphine pump g) supportive care e.g. changing dressings.
Hospital-based home care for children with cancer is widely used but controlled studies are relatively rare and the evidence base is limited. This prospective non-randomized controlled intervention study aimed to evaluate hospital-based home care for children with cancer.
A hospital-based home care program was conducted August 2008 - December 2009. Participants were children with cancer and their parents. The intervention group received part of their therapy, such as intravenous chemotherapy and antibiotics, as home care by a hospital-based home care nurse with paediatric-oncology experience. Children in the control group received all their treatment at the hospital.
Fifty-one children between 0 and 18 years were included in the home care program, and 47 children were included in the control group. After each home visit the parents answered a questionnaire. The results from 657 questionnaires showed that 100% were very satisfied or satisfied with home care and all would choose home care again, if offered as an option. There were no deaths or adverse effects of intravenous chemotherapy or antibiotics. A cost analysis based on the expenses associated with home care in correlation with standard cost of inpatient admissions and outpatient visits showed that the hospital-based home care programme was economically equal. The children's and the families' quality of life may be enhanced. The results indicate that the hospital-based home care program is safe, economically neutral and the parents' satisfaction with the program is major.
|Copenhagen university hospital, Rigshospitalet|
|Copenhagen, Denmark, 2100|
|Principal Investigator:||Helena Hansson, MSc||Rigshospitalet, Denmark|