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Gwendolyn P. Quinn, Susan T. Vadaparampil, Clement K. Gwede, Joyce D. Reinecke, Tina M. Mason and Celso Silva

The goal of this project was to develop a referral system to increase the likelihood that patients of childbearing age with newly diagnosed cancer receive timely information about fertility, and reduce the burden oncologists may feel when discussing and exploring fertility preservation options with their patients. The group developed and examined the effectiveness of a fertility preservation referral system through pilot-testing a developed patient education brochure. During the 12-month pilot-testing period, 776 patients of childbearing age (< 40 years) were seen at H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center and 349 brochures were taken. The reproductive endocrinologist/infertility clinic experienced a 9-fold increase in the number of calls received during the 12-month study period, with 122 calls received compared with 13 the prior year. The large increase in calls illuminates the gap in patient interest and referral, and shows an effective method to transmit this information. Improving the communication of time-sensitive information about fertility and preservation options to patients with cancer is associated with an increased likelihood of improving quality of life, reducing patient distress, and increasing use of ancillary fertility-related health services. Through referring and providing patient information, this referral system allows oncologists to fulfill their obligation and make informed decisions about fertility preservation, thereby improving the full cancer care continuum.

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Al B. Benson III

valuable—to patients certainly, but not only to patients. Patient-physician communication has changed drastically over the past several decades. Gone are the days when doctors either withheld the diagnosis of cancer from their patients or handed out

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Rodger J. Winn

, compliance with standard treatment, and need for emotional support to patients with melanoma . Arch Dermatol 1997 ; 133 : 316 – 321 . 3. Roberts CS Baker F Hann D . Patient-physician communication regarding use of complementary therapies during

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Christopher E. Desch

traztuzumab for early stage breast cancer . BMJ 2006 ; 332 : 1409 – 1413 . 11. Alexander G Casalino L Meltzer D . Patient-physician communication about out-of-pocket costs . JAMA 2003 ; 290 : 2543 – 2544 .

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Priya Wanchoo, Chris Larrison, Carol Rosenberg, Naomi Ko, Cynthia Cantril, Naomi Moeller, Ruchit Parikh and Ana-Marija Djordjevic

, presents an area of educational need. A critical aspect of patient–physician communication is the discussion of side effects. Although respondents in this study averaged low agreement with the statement “My patients do not always report the side effects

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Patricia A. Bomba and Daniel Vermilyea

preferences . Arch Intern Med 1999 ; 159 : 701 – 704 . 11. Hahn ME . MSJAMA. Advance directives and patient-physician communication . JAMA 2003 ; 289 : 96 . 12. Morrison RS Meier DE . High rates of advance care planning in New

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Juliet Jacobsen and Vicki A. Jackson

; 103 : 1965 – 1975 . 11 Quill TE Cassel CK . Nonabandonment: a central obligation for physicians . Ann Intern Med 1995 ; 122 : 368 – 374 . 12 Baile WF Aaron J . Patient-physician communication in oncology: past, present, and

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Kim Thiboldeaux

include advocating for approaches such as distress screening, palliative care, survivor care planning, and enhanced patient-physician communication. The reports also address the need to better integrate and align the medical establishment with community

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Chadi Nabhan and Sandeep Parsad

another opportunity for improving ambulatory oncology operations. Enhancing patient–physician communication platforms through patient portals as part of electronic medical records is already underway. Innovative and forward-thinking institutions have

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Julia C. Shih and Anthony J. Olszanski

and QoL. Many PRO measures have been developed and are well validated in practice, with feasibility proven for use in clinical settings. 11 They have been successfully implemented, improving patient–physician communication, physician awareness of