A new study published in the Journal of Clinical Oncology shows that breast cancer patients may not be correctly judging the quality of the care they get, Reuters' Andrew Seaman reports. "The impressions of breast cancer patients about the quality of care they received often differed from medical definitions of quality — in part because the patients were judging their experiences by a different set of standards," Seaman says. The researchers interviewed 374 women about their care and their trust in their doctors. They found that the majority of the women tended to underestimate the quality of care, Seaman says. In addition, a significantly lower percentage of black women said they got "excellent" care, compared to white or Hispanic women. "[Lead author Nina] Bickell said that it comes down to hospitals, doctors' offices, and other players in the healthcare delivery system to change the culture on the best way to take care of patients," Seaman adds. "That means making it easier for patients to make appointments, get referrals and test results, letting them know what the next steps are and telling the patient what they need to know to make it happen, she said."
Real or Imagined?
Apr 14, 2012