The Cancer Survivorship Journey: Models of Care, Disparities, Barriers, and Future Directions

Michael T. Halpern, Mary S. McCabe, Mary Ann Burg

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

60 Scopus citations


Although the number of long-term cancer survivors has increased substantially over past years, the journey of survivorship does not always include high-quality, patient-centered care. A variety of survivorship care models have evolved based on who provides this care, the survivor population, the site of care, and/or the capacity for delivering specific services. Other areas of survivorship care being explored include how long follow-up care is needed, application of a risk-based approach to survivorship care, and the role of the survivor in his or her own recovery. However, there is little evidence indicating whether any models improve clinical or patient-reported outcomes. A newer focus in survivorship care has included assessment of potential disparities; the sociodemographic characteristics of population subgroups associated with barriers to receiving high-quality cancer treatment may also affect the survivorship period. Developing policies and programs to address disparities in survivorship care is not simple, and examining how financial hardship affects cancer outcomes, reducing economic barriers to care, and increasing incorporation of patient-centered strategies may be important components. Here too, there is little evidence regarding the best strategies to address these disparities. Barriers to providing high-quality, patient-centered survivorship care include lack of evidence, lack of a trained survivorship workforce, lack of reimbursement structures/insurance coverage, and lack of a health care system that reduces fragmented care. Future research needs to focus on developing a survivorship care evidence base, exploring strategies to facilitate provision of survivorship care, and disseminating best survivorship care practices to diverse and international audiences.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)231-239
Number of pages9
JournalAmerican Society of Clinical Oncology educational book. American Society of Clinical Oncology. Meeting
StatePublished - 2016

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Medicine


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