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The University of Southampton
Health Needs

Our research

The Cancer, Palliative and End of Life Care Research Group runs programmes to investigate the experiences and concerns of people affected by cancer, other life-limiting illnesses, and the end of life scenario. We also develop, test and evaluate new interventions and investigate the organisation and delivery of care.

Our research falls into two main categories:

Cancer Survivorship
Palliative and End of Life Care

Our research portfolio consists of three programmes:

1. Understanding experiences and concerns

This research is based on understanding the experiences, concerns and symptoms of individuals affected by cancer, other life-limiting conditions, and those nearing the end of life.

In particular, we are seeking to examine: how cancer and other life-limiting conditions are experienced by patients and family members, the effect of this on all round health and well-being, along with patients' general perceptions of health, illness and treatment.

We are particularly interested in delineating patients' support needs, factors that influence those needs, and how patients may seek to self-manage their condition, along with factors that help or hinder this.

Particular groups of interest include: family carers, people with cancer of unknown primary, cancer survivors, and older people.

2. Developing, testing and evaluating new interventions

Our research is focussed on improving management of symptoms and patient concerns; factors which have a major impact on any patient's quality of life.

We also seek to develop, test and evaluate non-pharmacological interventions to improve the health and well-being of those affected by cancer and other life-limiting conditions.

Approaches to treatment and care that have been tested in trials include the better provision of information, enhanced emotional and practical support, improvement of self-management capabilities, and also complementary therapies.

In addition, we are interested in testing the effectiveness of different modes of intervention such as: face to face, as well as telephone and internet-delivered interventions for common concerns: namely, respiratory distress, cachexia, fatigue and arthralgia.

3. Investigating the organisation and delivery of care

Our research is concerned with producing rigorous and relevant evidence about access, utilisation, quality, organisation, delivery, and outcomes of services that will lead to an improvement in healthcare for people with cancer and other life-limiting conditions.

Through our research we seek to address a broad range of issues, including: access and equity, relevance and appropriateness, and how services are experienced from patient, family and care provider perspectives.

In particular, we focus on transitions between services through various stages of the health/illness continuum. These include: first presenting with symptoms and treatment to finishing treatment, living beyond cancer, living with advanced disease, and dealing with the end of life.


Research Assessment Exercise

Our exceptional results for nursing research speak for themselves and can be seen on the RAE website.

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