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Cancer@Work - a nurse-led, stepped-care, e-health intervention to enhance the return to work of patients with cancer: study protocol for a randomized controlled trial

Cancer@Work - a nurse-led, stepped-care, e-health intervention to enhance the return to work of patients with cancer: study protocol for a randomized controlled trial

Trials 17(1): 453

Although the importance of work for patients with cancer is nowadays more acknowledged both in the literature as well as in cancer survivorship care, effective interventions targeting the return to work of these patients are still scarce. Therefore, we developed a nurse-led, stepped-care, e-health intervention aimed at enhancing the return to work of patients with cancer. The objective of this study is to describe the content of the intervention and the study design used to evaluate the feasibility and (cost) effectiveness of the intervention. We designed a multi-centre randomised controlled trial with a follow-up of 12 months. Patients who have paid employment at the time of diagnosis, are on sick leave and are between 18-62 years old will be eligible to participate. After patients have signed the informed consent form and filled in the baseline questionnaire, they are randomly allocated to either the nurse-led, stepped-care, e-health intervention called Cancer@Work, or care as usual. The primary outcome is sustainable return to work. Secondary outcomes are sick leave days, work ability, work functioning, quality of life, quality of working life and time from initial sick leave to full return to work without extensive need for recovery. The feasibility of the Cancer@Work intervention and direct and indirect costs will be determined. Outcomes will be assessed by questionnaires at 3, 6, 9 and 12 months of follow-up. The results of this study will provide new insights into the feasibility and (cost) effectiveness of Cancer@Work, a nurse-led, stepped-care, e-health intervention for cancer patients aimed at enhancing their return to work. If proven effective, the intention is to implement the Cancer@Work intervention in usual psycho-oncological care. NTR (Netherlands Trial Registry): NTR5190 . Registered on 18 June 2015.

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Accession: 057350663

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PMID: 27634549

DOI: 10.1186/s13063-016-1578-8

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