Cancer Control Research5R21CA097361-02
Steiner, John F.
RETURN TO WORK IN CANCER SURVIVORS: A PILOT STUDY
DESCRIPTION (provided by applicant): For working-age cancer survivors, the ability to return to paid work during or after cancer treatment may have substantial impact on quality of life. Little is known about the clinical, personal, or social characteristics that mediate return to work (RTW) after cancer, however. The long-term goal of the research initiated through this exploratory grant is to identify modifiable clinical and psychosocial factors that affect RTW, and to evaluate interventions to facilitate RTW for cancer survivors. This project has two specific aims: 1) to conduct a qualitative study of adult cancer survivors to characterize the domains that are salient to their decisions about RTW; and 2) to develop and pilot test an interviewer-administered survey of work outcomes and the domains that affect work decisions. Cancer survivors for both phases of the study will be drawn from the Colorado Central Cancer Registry, and stratified on age, socioeconomic status, and clinical prognosis. The qualitative survey will be administered to 75-90 cancer survivors who will complete semi-structured interviews that will be transcribed and qualitatively analyzed to identify important domains affecting RTW decisions. Based on the findings of the qualitative survey, a pilot quantitative survey will be designed. The pilot survey will be tested in 300 cancer survivors drawn from the cancer registry. The results of this exploratory project will be used to develop a more extensive survey of cancer survivors, and/or to identify the critical components of interventions to enhance RTW that can be tested in subsequent research.