eHealth, Management, CT, Radiation therapy / Oncology, Patterns of Care, Workforce
A. J. McKean, L. Sullivan, A. Shorthouse; Garran, ACT/AU
A large proportion of radiation oncology appointments can be completed using telephone/telehealth, with a relatively small number of these requiring subsequent face-to-face appointments.
Patients with tumour subsites that were more easily surveilled radiologically or biochemically, rather than direct physical examination, were less likely to require subsequent face-to-face consultations following telephone/telehealth consults.
This study adds to the global experience of radiation oncology departments providing care during the COVID-19 pandemic. At present, this is the only identifiable study during the pandemic of its kind.
In the post-pandemic era, telephone/telehealth consultations may have a role in the provision of radiation oncology services in Australia. However, careful patient selection and accounting for multiple variables would be needed to ensure effective and safe healthcare is provided.