Meeting the Information Needs of Lower Income Cancer Survivors: Results of a Randomized Control Trial Evaluating the American Cancer Society’s “I Can Cope”
Author(s)MARTIN, MICHELLE Y.
EVANS, MARY B.
POLLACK, LORI A.
SMITH, JUDITH LEE
TSENG, TUNG SUNG
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AbstractThe American Cancer Society is a leader in the development of cancer survivorship resources. One resource of the American Cancer Society is the I Can Cope program, an educational program for cancer survivors and their families. Evaluations of this program indicate that cancer patients highly rate its objectives. Yet, there are gaps in the understanding of the full impact of the program on diverse cancer survivors. In this study, the authors used a randomized trial to evaluate the program. Participants included 140 low-income survivors (79% Black; 38% breast cancer) from community hospitals who were randomized to 4 sessions of I Can Cope (learning about cancer; understanding cancer treatments; relieving cancer pain; and keeping well in mind and body) or 4 sessions of a wellness intervention (humor, meditation, relaxation, and music therapy). The authors’ primary outcome was “met information needs.” After controlling for covariates, their analysis indicated that I Can Cope was no more effective than the wellness intervention in addressing survivor information needs relative to the learning objectives. Participants provided high overall ratings for both interventions. Self-efficacy for obtaining advice about cancer, age, education, and income were associated with information needs. Educational programs tailored to levels of self-efficacy and patient demographics may be needed.