American Association for Cancer Research
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FIGURE 2 from Perceived Appropriateness of Assessing for Health-related Socioeconomic Risks Among Adult Patients with Cancer

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posted on 2024-05-20, 09:20 authored by Milkie Vu, Kelly Boyd, Emilia H. De Marchis, Bridgette G. Garnache, Laura M. Gottlieb, Cary P. Gross, Nita K. Lee, Stacy Tessler Lindau, Sophia Mun, Victoria A. Winslow, Jennifer A. Makelarski

Patterns of overlapping HRSRs among a sample of patients with cancer (N = 154). The percentage represents the proportion of the sample with that particular HRSR.


HHS | NIH | National Cancer Institute (NCI)

HHS | NIH | National Institute on Aging (NIA)

HHS | NIH | National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities (NIMHD)



Cancer treatment can trigger or exacerbate health-related socioeconomic risks (HRSR; food/housing insecurity, transportation/utilities difficulties, and interpersonal violence). The American Cancer Society and National Cancer Institute recommend HRSR screening and referral, but little research has examined the perceptions of patients with cancer on the appropriateness of HRSR screening in healthcare settings. We examined whether HRSR status, desire for assistance with HRSRs, and sociodemographic and health care–related factors were associated with perceived appropriateness of HRSR screening in health care settings and comfort with HRSR documentation in electronic health records (EHR). A convenience sample of adult patients with cancer at two outpatient clinics completed self-administered surveys. We used χ2 and Fisher exact tests to test for significant associations. The sample included 154 patients (72% female, 90% ages 45 years or older). Thirty-six percent reported ≥1 HRSRs and 27% desired assistance with HRSRs. Overall, 80% thought it was appropriate to assess for HRSRs in health care settings. The distributions of HRSR status and sociodemographic characteristics were similar among people who perceived screening to be appropriate and those who did not. Participants who perceived screening as appropriate were three times as likely to report prior experience with HRSR screening (31% vs. 10%, P = 0.01). Moreover, 60% felt comfortable having HRSRs documented in the EHR. Comfort with EHR documentation of HRSRs was significantly higher among patients desiring assistance with HRSRs (78%) compared with those who did not (53%, P < 0.01). While initiatives for HRSR screening are likely to be seen by patients with cancer as appropriate, concerns may remain over electronic documentation of HRSRs. National organizations recommend addressing HRSRs such as food/housing insecurity, transportation/utilities difficulties, and interpersonal violence among patients with cancer. In our study, most patients with cancer perceived screening for HRSRs in clinical settings as appropriate. Meanwhile, concerns may remain over the documentation of HRSRs in EHRs.

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