PURPOSE Cancer clinical trial accrual rates are low, and information about contributing factors is needed. We examined video-recorded clinical interactions to identify circumstances under which patients potentially eligible for a trial at a major cancer center were offered a trial. METHODS We conducted a qualitative directed content analysis of 62 recorded interactions with physicians (n = 13) and patients with intermediate- or high-risk prostate cancer (n = 43). Patients were screened and potentially eligible for a trial. We observed and coded the interactions in 3 steps: (1) classification of all interactions as explicit offer, offer pending, trial discussed/not offered, or trial not discussed; (2) in interactions with no explicit offer, classification of whether the cancer had progressed; (3) in interactions classified as progression but no trial offered, identification of factors discussed that may explain the lack of an offer. RESULTS Of the 62 interactions, 29% were classified as explicit offer, 12% as offer pending, 18% as trial discussed/not offered, and 39% as trial not discussed. Of those with no offer, 57% included information that the cancer had not progressed. In 68% of the remaining interactions with patients whose cancer had progressed but did not receive an offer, reasons for the lack of offer were identified, but in 32%, no explanation was provided. CONCLUSION Even in optimal circumstances, few patients were offered a trial, often because their cancer had not progressed. Findings support professional recommendations to broaden trial inclusion criteria. Findings suggest accrual rates should reflect the proportion of eligible patients who enroll.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Health Policy