Media Watch 526

Attached is the current edition of Media Watch (#526).


Of special interest in the current issue of the weekly report:

Palliative care in special settings of cancer care

JOURNAL OF ONCOLOGY PRACTICE | Online – 16 August 2017 – Tribalism is a bold word that summarizes the behaviour of people who identify themselves as part of a group. Oncology as a whole is a tribe with its own customs, language, and conventions. Within oncology, surgical, radiation, medical, gynecologic, malignant hematologic, transplantation, and pediatric fields are distinct tribes with distinctive rites and rituals of usual behavior that are carried out in special settings. Successful integration of palliative care (PC) requires a keen and unabashed recognition of this. Most important ... is language. The prolonged training of oncologists of any stripe gives them a unique language. When someone in PC does not know how to “speak cancer,” he or she is frequently shunned, denigrated, and not brought into the treatment team. Although those without oncology backgrounds can provide excellent PC for patients with cancer, if they do not understand the language and/or work to learn it, the wonderful alchemy of interdisciplinary teamwork will not happen.

Big Data analysis to improve care for people living with serious illness: The potential to use new emerging technology in palliative care

PALLIATIVE MEDICINE | Online – 14 August 2017 – Healthcare professionals are generally unaware of how Big Data can be used to improve palliative care delivery. Furthermore, there is a lack of collaborative multi-professional groups with expertise in key areas (such as information technology, clinical practice, computer science, economics, statistics, and research methods). A lack of expertise in the development, maintenance and analysis of electronic health record systems may prevent adequate design of systems for the user. This may limit the quality of data collection and extraction (necessary for meaningful data analysis). Engagement with healthcare professionals is essential to support the design of digital systems that are necessary to improve the ability of clinical staff to work effectively. Additionally, data analysts are needed to make sense of the data generated by this process. Therefore, in order to realise the potential of Big Data, it is important to develop multi-professional groups with the expertise to use data meaningfully, to influence healthcare policy and clinical care delivery.