'Act on oncology' as a new comprehensive approach to assess prostate cancer centres - Method description and results of a pilot study

Wieland Voigt, Josef Hoellthaler, Tiziana Magnani, Vito Corrao, Riccardo Valdagni

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Multidisciplinary care of prostate cancer is increasingly offered in specialised cancer centres. It requires the optimisation of medical and operational processes and the integration of the different medical and non-medical stakeholders.Objective: To develop a standardised operational process assessment tool basing on the capability maturity model integration (CMMI) able to implement multidisciplinary care and improve process quality and efficiency.Design, Setting, and Participants: Information for model development was derived from medical experts, clinical guidelines, best practice elements of renowned cancer centres, and scientific literature. Data were organised in a hierarchically structured model, consisting of 5 categories, 30 key process areas, 172 requirements, and more than 1500 criteria. Compliance with requirements was assessed through structured on-site surveys covering all relevant clinical and management processes. Comparison with best practice standards allowed to recommend improvements. 'Act On Oncology'(AoO) was applied in a pilot study on a prostate cancer unit in Europe.Results and Limitations: Several best practice elements such as multidisciplinary clinics or advanced organisational measures for patient scheduling were observed. Substantial opportunities were found in other areas such as centre management and infrastructure. As first improvements the evaluated centre administration described and formalised the organisation of the prostate cancer unit with defined personnel assignments and clinical activities and a formal agreement is being worked on to have structured access to First-Aid Posts.Conclusions: In the pilot study, the AoO approach was feasible to identify opportunities for process improvements. Measures were derived that might increase the operational process quality and efficiency.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere106743
JournalPLoS One
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - Sep 5 2014

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Medicine(all)


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