Optimize and enhance
Multidisciplinary team meetings are a well-established structure for team-based treatment decision-making in oncological healthcare worldwide. In Belgium, the “multidisciplinary oncology consult” (MOC) exists as a specific, legally regulated and mandatory type of MDTM. It includes a financial incentive for participating physicians, since 2003 managed by the National Institute for Health and Disability Insurance (NIHDI). The MOC is legally described as a single consultation per individual patient. because of organizational convenience these are clustered in a collective meeting for several patients at stake, generally per tumor group. These meetings are typically called as “MOC-meetings” at Belgian oncology departments.
Treatment decision-making process in healthcare is shifting from a mere biomedical focused model to a patient-centred approach in which patients’ needs, values and preferences are equally put forward alongside the pure medical information. Especially in oncology, a personalized approach is essential since treatments might have a considerable impact on patients’ quality of life, in most cases for a prolonged period of time.
Previous evidence shows that a MOC, however, is subject to a pattern of unequal participation and suboptimal sharing of information between the medical and non-medical disciplines, which indirectly affects the decision-making processes. It becomes clear that here is an urgent need to optimize the current MOC in terms of
- interdisciplinarity so that the expertise and input of different medical as well as non-medical disciplines are equally valued;
- patient centeredness to guarantee individualized treatment decisions instead of a disease (or tumor) oriented decision
Hence, this project involves the development of an intervention to optimize collaborative treatment decision, tailored to the specific context of MOC-meetings at Belgian oncology departments with the overarching objective of optimizing the current work processes during the MOC to enhance patient-centred decision-making.