A new study reports that patients with head and neck cancer received definitive treatment recommendations within two weeks of presentation when researchers used a patient navigation model in which all patients met with a nurse navigator who coordinated their care (JAMA Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. 2015;141:804-809).
The study investigators set out to determine the feasibility of providing treatment recommendations within a two-week period from time of disease presentation. They found that 47 of the 93 (51%) patients included in the study received treatment recommendations within this two-week goal.
To achieve the goal, a nurse patient navigator met with each patient within two days of patient presentation and referral to guide the patient through clinical visits, lab work, and discussions of treatment recommendations.