Putting the patient at the core of personalised cancer care delivery remains the elusive final frontier
Over 20 years ago, the Australian House of Representatives Inquiry into the management of breast cancer recommended that cancer care should be delivered using a multidisciplinary approach.1 Ten years later, an article published in this Journal articulated how to put multidisciplinary care into practice,2 paving the way for the concept to be embedded into clinical cancer practice and policy of today.3 One of the key recommendations made in the article, and since adopted as national policy, was for the patient to be included “as a member of the multidisciplinary team”. But as of today, multidisciplinary care does not routinely include input from patients themselves. Patients do not attend multidisciplinary meetings. Rather, their circumstances are discussed and treatment recommendations are made. They may subsequently make a shared decision with the clinician, but their input tends to occur after the multidisciplinary discussion and it is uncommon for the patients’ perspectives to systematically inform these discussions.
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