Supportive Care in Cancer

, Volume 20, Issue 3, pp 499–505 | Cite as

Reconceptualising relocation for specialist treatment: insights from New Zealand

Original Article

Abstract

Purpose

To date, the research on relocation has been conducted in countries such as Australia where there are vast distances that need to be travelled by regional, rural and remote patients to access specialist metropolitan treatment. This research considers the issue of relocation for specialist treatment in a New Zealand context.

Methods

The exploration of the experience of relocation from the consumers’ perspective was conducted through an iterative, qualitative research methodology using open-ended interviews conducted by speaker-phone at the time and location of each participant’s choice.

Results

The three factors that underpin the phenomenon of ‘travel-based’ accommodation in New Zealand are the strong desire to return home, the small geographical distances that make this possible for many and the strong determination to endure hardship associated with travel when distances are long.

Conclusions

Any understanding of relocation for specialist treatment needs to be informed by two concepts: ‘travel-based’ relocation and ‘accommodation-based’ relocation.

Relevance of manuscript to inform research, policies and/or programs

The focus needs to be on providing supportive travel arrangements where possible. In New Zealand, as elsewhere, cancer supportive care organisations are increasingly providing volunteers to assist with travel. Such practical volunteer assistance is important, as is financial support through government subsidies to cover the cost of such travel. The insights from the study affirm the importance of health professionals who are supportive and creative in their efforts to assist people to return home. Supportive clinical care such as addressing issues in relation to nausea and pain management for those travelling must also be considered.

Keywords

Haematological malignancies Relocation Specialist treatment Travel Accommodation 

References

  1. 1.
    De la Morena M, Gatti R (2010) A history of bone marrow transplantation. Immunol Allergy Clin North Am 30(1):1–15PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. 2.
    Nicholson L, Sheldon-Collins G, Sih K (2009) Bone marrow transplantation at the Royal Hobart Hospital. Aust Nurs J 16(11):49PubMedGoogle Scholar
  3. 3.
    National Rural Health Alliance (NRHA) (2007) Submission to Australian Senate Community Affairs Committee inquiry on patient assisted travel schemes. Senate Printing Unit, Parliament House, CanberraGoogle Scholar
  4. 4.
    Standing Committee on Community Affairs (SCCA) (2007) Highway to health: better access for rural, regional and remote patients. Senate Committee Report. Senate Printing Unit, Parliament House, CanberraGoogle Scholar
  5. 5.
    Ho S, Horne D, Szer J (2002) The adaptation of patients during the hospitalization period of bone marrow transplantation. J Clin Psychol Med Settings 9:167–175CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. 6.
    Mah K, Khoraych M, Lipton J, Messner H, Khoraych G, Krawiec K, Lefebvre F, Devins G (2008) Do allogeneic bone marrow transplant candidates match coping to controllability of pre-treatment stressors? Psychol Health Med 13(3):337–345PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. 7.
    Schulz-Kindermann F, Hennings U, Ramm G, Zander A, Hasenbring M (2002) The role of biomedical and psychosocial factors for the prediction of pain and distress in patients undergoing high-dose therapy and BMT/PBSCT. Bone Marrow Transplant 29:341–351PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. 8.
    Hochhausen N, Papadopolous E, Altmaier E, Carter S, McQuellon R, Henslee-Downey J, Davies S (2007) Social support, optimism, and self-efficacy predict physical and emotional well-being after bone marrow transplantation. J Psychosoc Oncol 25(1):87–100PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. 9.
    McGrath P (1999) Experience of relocation for specialist treatment for haematological malignancies. Cancer Strategy 1:157–163Google Scholar
  10. 10.
    McGrath P, Rogers T (2003) Relocation for specialist treatment for paediatric acute lymphoblastic leukaemia. Austral-Asian J Cancer 2(2):107–115Google Scholar
  11. 11.
    McGrath P (1998) Relocation for treatment for leukaemia: a description of need. Aust Health Rev 21(4):143–154PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. 12.
    McGrath P (1999) Accommodation for patients and carers during relocation for treatment for leukaemia: a descriptive profile. Support Care Cancer 7:6–10PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. 13.
    Holloway I (2008) A–Z of qualitative research in healthcare, 2nd edn. Blackwell, OxfordGoogle Scholar
  14. 14.
    Patton M (2002) Qualitative research and evaluation methods, 3rd edn. Sage, Thousand OaksGoogle Scholar
  15. 15.
    Krathwohl D (1993) Methods of educational and social science research: an integrated approach. Longman, New YorkGoogle Scholar
  16. 16.
    Polit D, Hungler B (1995) Nursing research: principles and methods, 5th edn. Lippincott, PhiladelphiaGoogle Scholar
  17. 17.
    Gaskill D, Henderson A, Fraser M (1997) Exploring the everyday world of the patient in isolation. Oncol Nurs Forum 24(4):695–700PubMedGoogle Scholar
  18. 18.
    McGrath P (2001) Returning home after specialist treatment for haematological malignancies: an Australian study. Fam Community Health 24:36–48PubMedGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.International Program of Psycho-Social Health Research (IPP-SHR), Centre of National Research on Disability and Rehabilitation Medicine, Griffith Health InstituteGriffith UniversityBrisbaneAustralia
  2. 2.BrisbaneAustralia
  3. 3.Faculty of Science, Education and HealthCentral Queensland UniversityBrisbaneAustralia

Personalised recommendations