OBJECTIVES: To validate five items (CPWQ-inf) regarding satisfaction with information provided to cancer patients from health care staff, assess the prevalence of dissatisfaction with this information, and identify factors predicting dissatisfaction.
METHODS: The questionnaire was validated by patient-observer agreement and cognitive interviews. The prevalence of dissatisfaction was assessed in a cross-sectional sample of all cancer patients in contact with hospitals during the past year in three Danish counties.
RESULTS: The validation showed that the CPWQ performed well. Between 3 and 23% of the 1490 participating patients were dissatisfied with each of the measured aspects of information. The highest level of dissatisfaction was reported regarding the guidance, support and help provided when the diagnosis was given. Younger patients were consistently more dissatisfied than older patients.
CONCLUSIONS: The brief CPWQ performs well for survey purposes. The survey depicts the heterogeneous patient population encountered by hospital staff and showed that younger patients probably had higher expectations or a higher need for information and that those with more severe diagnoses/prognoses require extra care in providing information.
PRACTICAL IMPLICATIONS: Four brief questions can efficiently assess information needs. With increasing demands for information, a wide range of innovative initiatives is needed.