Brandes, K., & Van Weert, J.C.M. (2017). Implementing consultation audio-recordings and question prompt lists into routine cancer care: How can we address healthcare providers’ barriers? Patient Education and Counseling, 100(6), 1029-1030. doi:10.1016/j.pec.2017.02.002

Introduction: In oncology consultations patients receive crucial information about their disease, treatment and prognosis. It is important that patients remember and understand this information so that they can make informed treatment decisions, adequately adhere to a treatment plan and cope with their disease and possible side-effects. However, 40–80% of the information given by healthcare providers in a consultation is not remembered by patients and more than half of the given information is recalled incorrectly [1]. This can be explained by the cognitive limitations in the amount of information that people are able to receive, process, and remember, but also by factors such as receiving too much, unclear or stressful information, little prior medical knowledge, age and high levels of anxiety [1–3]. Recall of medical information can be improved by recall-promoting behaviors of the provider such as repetition, categorization and technical term avoidance. Good information provision also entails checking whether the patient truly understands the information, exploring patients’ prior and current knowledge about the disease, and summarizing previously mentioned recommendations [4–6]. The recognition of patients’ expressions of emotions followed by an adequate response can also positively affect recall [7].

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