Background: Multidisciplinary tumor boards play a pivotal role in the patient-centered clinical management and in the decision-making process to provide best evidence-based, diagnostic, and therapeutic care to patients with cancer. Among the barriers to achieve an efficient multidisciplinary tumor board, lack of time and geographical distance play a major role. Therefore, the elaboration of an efficient virtual multidisciplinary tumor board (VMTB) is a key point to successfully obtain an oncology team and implement a network among health professionals and institutions. This need is stronger than ever during the COVID-19 pandemic. Objective: This paper presents a research protocol for an observational study focused on exploring the structuring process and the implementation of a multi-institutional VMTB in Sicily, Italy. Other endpoints include analysis of cooperation between participants, adherence to guidelines, patients' outcomes, and patient satisfaction. Methods: This protocol encompasses a pragmatic, observational, multicenter, noninterventional, prospective trial. The study's programmed duration is 5 years, with a half-yearly analysis of the primary and secondary objectives' measurements. Oncology care health professionals from various oncology subspecialties at oncology departments in multiple hospitals (academic and general hospitals as well as tertiary centers and community hospitals) are involved in a nonhierarchic manner. VMTB employs an innovative, virtual, cloud-based platform to share anonymized medical data that are discussed via a videoconferencing system both satisfying security criteria and compliance with the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act. Results: The protocol is part of a larger research project on communication and multidisciplinary collaboration in oncology units and departments spread in the Sicily region. The results of this study will particularly focus on the organization of VMTBs, involving oncology units present in different hospitals spread in the area, and creating a network to allow best patient care pathways and a hub-and-spoke relationship. The present results will also include data concerning organization skills and pitfalls, barriers, efficiency, number, and types with respect to clinical cases and customer satisfaction. Conclusions: VMTB represents a unique opportunity to optimize patient management through a patient-centered approach. An efficient virtualization and data-banking system is potentially time-saving, a source for outcome data, and a detector of possible holes in the hull of clinical pathways. The observations and results from this VMTB study may hopefully be useful to design nonclinical and organizational interventions that enhance multidisciplinary decision-making in oncology.

Virtual clinical and precision medicine tumor boards-cloud-based platform-mediated implementation of multidisciplinary reviews among oncology centers in the covid-19 era: Protocol for an observational study

Gebbia V.
2021-01-01

Abstract

Background: Multidisciplinary tumor boards play a pivotal role in the patient-centered clinical management and in the decision-making process to provide best evidence-based, diagnostic, and therapeutic care to patients with cancer. Among the barriers to achieve an efficient multidisciplinary tumor board, lack of time and geographical distance play a major role. Therefore, the elaboration of an efficient virtual multidisciplinary tumor board (VMTB) is a key point to successfully obtain an oncology team and implement a network among health professionals and institutions. This need is stronger than ever during the COVID-19 pandemic. Objective: This paper presents a research protocol for an observational study focused on exploring the structuring process and the implementation of a multi-institutional VMTB in Sicily, Italy. Other endpoints include analysis of cooperation between participants, adherence to guidelines, patients' outcomes, and patient satisfaction. Methods: This protocol encompasses a pragmatic, observational, multicenter, noninterventional, prospective trial. The study's programmed duration is 5 years, with a half-yearly analysis of the primary and secondary objectives' measurements. Oncology care health professionals from various oncology subspecialties at oncology departments in multiple hospitals (academic and general hospitals as well as tertiary centers and community hospitals) are involved in a nonhierarchic manner. VMTB employs an innovative, virtual, cloud-based platform to share anonymized medical data that are discussed via a videoconferencing system both satisfying security criteria and compliance with the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act. Results: The protocol is part of a larger research project on communication and multidisciplinary collaboration in oncology units and departments spread in the Sicily region. The results of this study will particularly focus on the organization of VMTBs, involving oncology units present in different hospitals spread in the area, and creating a network to allow best patient care pathways and a hub-and-spoke relationship. The present results will also include data concerning organization skills and pitfalls, barriers, efficiency, number, and types with respect to clinical cases and customer satisfaction. Conclusions: VMTB represents a unique opportunity to optimize patient management through a patient-centered approach. An efficient virtualization and data-banking system is potentially time-saving, a source for outcome data, and a detector of possible holes in the hull of clinical pathways. The observations and results from this VMTB study may hopefully be useful to design nonclinical and organizational interventions that enhance multidisciplinary decision-making in oncology.
File in questo prodotto:
Non ci sono file associati a questo prodotto.

I documenti in IRIS sono protetti da copyright e tutti i diritti sono riservati, salvo diversa indicazione.

Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11387/158745
Citazioni
  • ???jsp.display-item.citation.pmc??? 7
  • Scopus 8
  • ???jsp.display-item.citation.isi??? 6
social impact