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Study protocol for a single-centre observational study of household wellbeing and poverty status following a diagnosis of advanced cancer in Blantyre, Malawi - ‘Safeguarding the Family’ study

Bates, Jane, Muula, Adamson, Gordon, Stephen ORCID:, Henrion, Marc, Tomeny, Ewan ORCID:, MacPherson, Peter ORCID:, Squire, Bertel ORCID: and Niessen, Louis ORCID: (2020) 'Study protocol for a single-centre observational study of household wellbeing and poverty status following a diagnosis of advanced cancer in Blantyre, Malawi - ‘Safeguarding the Family’ study'. Wellcome Open Research, Vol 5, Issue 2.

study protocol for a single centre observational study of household wellbeing.pdf - Published Version
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Background: Many households in low-and-middle income countries face the additional burden of crippling out-of-pocket expenditure when faced with a diagnosis of life-limiting illness. Available evidence suggests that receipt of palliative care supports cost-savings for cancer-affected households. This study will explore the relationship between receipt of palliative care, total household out-of-pocket expenditure on health and wellbeing following a first-time diagnosis of advanced cancer at Queen Elizabeth Central Hospital in Blantyre, Malawi.
Protocol: Patients and their primary family caregivers will be recruited at the time of cancer diagnosis. Data on healthcare utilisation, related costs, coping strategies and wellbeing will be gathered using new and existing questionnaires (the Patient-and-Carer Cancer Cost Survey, EQ-5D-3L and the Integrated Palliative Care Outcome Score). Surveys will be repeated at one, three and six months after diagnosis. In the event of the patient’s death, a brief five-item questionnaire on funeral costs will be administered to caregivers not less than two weeks following the date of death. Descriptive and Poisson regression analyses will assess the relationship between exposure to palliative care and total household expenditure from baseline to six months. A sample size of 138 households has been calculated in order to detect a medium effect (as determined by Cohen’s f2=0.15) of receipt of palliative care in a regression model for change in total household out-of-pocket expenditure as a proportion of annual household income.
Ethics and dissemination: The study has received ethical approval. Results will be reported using STROBE guidelines and disseminated through scientific meetings, open access publications and a national stakeholder meeting.
Conclusions: This study will provide data on expenditure for healthcare by households affected by cancer in Malawi. We also explore whether receipt of palliative care is associated with a reduction in out-of-pocket expenditure at household level.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: QZ Pathology > Neoplasms. Cysts > QZ 200 Neoplasms. Cysts (General)
WA Public Health > WA 30 Socioeconomic factors in public health (General)
WA Public Health > Health Problems of Special Population Groups > WA 395 Health in developing countries
Faculty: Department: Clinical Sciences & International Health > Clinical Sciences Department
Clinical Sciences & International Health > International Public Health Department
Digital Object Identifer (DOI):
Depositing User: Tina Bowers
Date Deposited: 31 Jan 2020 09:29
Last Modified: 17 Mar 2020 13:23


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