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17.09.2017 | Original Article | Ausgabe 2/2018

Supportive Care in Cancer 2/2018

Analysing the impact of a case management model on the specialised palliative care multi-professional team

Supportive Care in Cancer > Ausgabe 2/2018
Julia Strupp, Christina Dose, Ulrike Kuhn, Maren Galushko, Anne Duesterdiek, Nicole Ernstmann, Holger Pfaff, Christoph Ostgathe, Raymond Voltz, Heidrun Golla
Wichtige Hinweise
Julia Strupp and Christina Dose contributed equally to this manuscript



Palliative care (PC) involves many health care providers leading to a high complexity of structures that requires efficient coordination as provided by case management (CM). Our study aimed to evaluate the effects of CM newly implemented in a specialised palliative care unit by evaluating team members’ tasks and time resources before (T0) and after implementation (T1). It was hypothesised that team members would be able to spend less time on organisational and administrative tasks and more time on patient care.


A prospective pre-post study design was used. Time distribution of different tasks at T0 and T1 was compared between three different professional groups: physicians, nursing staff and social work. To document their tasks and time required, a documentation form with several items for each profession was developed. Data was analysed using t tests for independent samples.


After Bonferroni correction, a significant pre-post difference was found for the time spent on “discharge interview and discharge” as rated by the physicians (p < .001) with less time spent on this activity after CM implementation. The nursing staff had significantly more time for “conversations with patients” (p < .001) after CM implementation. Moreover, they spent significantly less time on “patient-related requests/advice by telephone” (p < .001) and “discussions with relatives/participation in family discussions” at post-assessment (p < .001). The social worker had significantly more time for “patient advice and support services” (p = .013) after CM implementation.


Integrating CM can be time efficient and ensures team members to spend more time on their core tasks in patient care.

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