Rapid Response Radiotherapy Program and Multidisciplinary Bone Metastases Clinic (p. 5-22)
Authors: Janet Nguyen, Arjun Sahgal, Emily Sinclair, Gunita Mitera, Macey Farhadian, Cyril Danjoux, Joel Finkelstein, Albert Yee, Michael Ford, Robyn Pugash, Urban Emmenegger, Anita Chakraborty and Edward Chow
Abstract: Waiting for radiotherapy (RT) in Ontario has been a major problem for the past decade. In 1996, the Sunnybrook Odette Cancer Centre (OCC) initiated a Rapid Response Radiotherapy Program (RRRP) to provide timely palliative RT for symptom relief of patients with advanced cancer. Nearly all patients were simulated for radiation treatment on the same day of consultation, with the majority starting treatment on the same day as simulation. The Bone Metastases Clinic (BMC) was initiated in 1999 to provide a coordinated multidisciplinary approach to the care of cancer patients with bone metastases. This dedicated care approach saves time, effort and human resources that both patients and health care providers would otherwise expend during separate, sequential visits to various specialists for consultation. The Prostate Bone Metastases Clinic (PBMC) was also initiated in conjunction with the BMC, as prostate cancer is the most common cancer in Canada among men. Research is an integral part of the RRRP and the BMC/PBMC. At these clinics, the majority of patients are eligible for at least one ongoing study and all patients are registered on a prospective database, which is important in order to obtain prospective outcome data. These innovative research programs at the OCC have been recognized in the medical community as a model for other centres to emulate.