The following is a summary of “A Patient-Centered Model of Fast-Track Lung Cancer Diagnosis,” published in the July 2023 issue of the Clinical Lung Cancer by Pradere et al.
Despite the growing significance of digital resources in contemporary life over the past decades, more is needed to know about the effect of internet-based solutions on patient health. The researchers intended to investigate the potential value of a digital platform that assists patients in coping with abnormal chest CT scans that may indicate lung cancer. They establish a streamlined path to lung cancer diagnosis through a secure online platform.
The combination of patient-generated data and online examination of their imaging enables the planning of additional investigations before clinical evaluation. They compared the outcomes of “self-referred” patients (patient group) who filled out the online questionnaire directly to those of “general practitioner-driven” patients (GP group). From June 2021 to June 2022, they included 125 patients: 41% in the patient group and 59% in the GP group. There was no significant difference between groups in terms of time from contact to first appointment (median 5 days in both groups, P =.6), percentage of pathways with pre-booked tests (94% vs 92%, P =.6), number of scheduled invasive procedures (median 1, IQR 1-2 vs 2, IQR 1-2, P =.4), or final cancer diagnosis (76% vs 78%, P =.4).
A lung cancer diagnosis pathway that is directly accessible to patients via a secure online platform was feasible and just as effective as the conventional general practitioner-led path. It demonstrated the value of leveraging new digital tools to address the unique challenges of a patient-centric healthcare system.