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Cardio-oncology patients report satisfaction with telehealth amid pandemic

February 15, 2022

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Kyaw KKK. Original Research Abstract 67. Presented at: American College of Cardiology’s Advancing the Cardiovascular Care of the Oncology Patient virtual course; Feb. 11-12, 2022 (virtual meeting).

Kyaw reports no relevant financial disclosures.

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Researchers reported high patient satisfaction with cardio-oncology telehealth consultations during the COVID-19 pandemic.

According to a presentation during the American College of Cardiology’s Advancing the Cardiovascular Care of the Oncology Patient virtual course, reasons for cardio-oncology telehealth visit satisfaction included reduced wait times, avoidance of SARS-CoV-2 infection and perception of reliability for treatment intensification.


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Khin Kay Kay Kyaw

“Teleconsultation has become popular for patient safety and cost-effectiveness. As cardio-oncology patients are vulnerable groups, virtual cardio-oncology clinics are highly valued in recent years. Our primary aim is to understand the effectiveness of virtual Zoom clinics on three phases including treatment intensification phase, investigation appointment and virtual quality and to explore the main reasons for positive satisfaction and how we can make a real difference in virtual quality and convenience in this population,” Khin Kay Kay Kyaw, MRCP UK, fellow in cardiology at the Heart and Lung Centre, The Royal Wolverhampton NHS Trust, told Healio. “As evidenced, virtual Zoom clinics have been highly valued during the COVID-19 crisis to connect patients and cardio-oncologists for long-term compliance and patient safety. From the patients’ perspective, our survey revealed positive satisfaction in terms of reduced waiting times, cost-effectiveness and treatment optimization on a regular basis with detection of CV risk factors following the oncology treatment.”

From Aug. 1 to Nov. 1, 2021, 35 patients were enrolled, of whom 30 attended virtual Zoom clinics due to ongoing covid pandemic.

The researchers created a questionnaire to assess patient satisfaction in three domains: treatment intensification, investigation appointment and quality of the overall telehealth consultation. Variables of telehealth quality included voice quality, internet connection and availability of helpline for emergency.

Participants took part in a final satisfaction survey was recorded from the day of patients’ virtual appointment up to the next virtual review.

According to the presentation, 80% of participants reported positive satisfaction with the overall virtual consultation and investigation appointments. The 20% who reported lower satisfaction attributed it to lack of secure internet connection and poor explanation of patient concerns.

Kyaw and colleagues noted that the main variable associated with positive satisfaction included reduced outpatient waiting time; perception of patient safety due to avoidance of SARS-CoV-2 infection risks in cardio-oncology patient groups; and perception of reliability of virtual reviews in terms of treatment intensification and cost-effectiveness.

According to the results of the final survey, two-thirds of patients who attended virtual cardio-oncology clinics were in favor of incorporating them into their ongoing treatment intensification phase during the pandemic.

“There is no doubt that the role of virtual Zoom clinics would replace the face-to-face reviews in the context of cost-effectiveness, timeliness and easy access to online Zoom communications with advanced technological tools including videoconferencing and AI tools for telemonitoring. As COVID-19 infection is ongoing and unpredictable, the wider public and the especially vulnerable cardio-oncology patient community would prefer Zoom teleconsultation for long-term management follow-up in the future,” Kyaw told Healio. “The implementation science of virtual Zoom clinics in the cardio-oncology field is the key measure for empowering the cardio-oncology patients and the public through networking, cost-effectiveness and positive satisfaction.”