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e-DiSCover: A digital health solution to build capacity for supportive care and survivorship clinical trials for child, adolescent, and young adult survivors of childhood cancer

Lead researcher

Associate Professor Maria McCarthy

Associate Professor Maria McCarthy

Institution
Murdoch Children's Research Institute

Years funded
2022 - 2024

What is the project?

The aim of the eDiSCover project is to develop an innovative solution to engaging children and adolescents who have been treated for childhood cancers and their families throughout their off treatment care.

The development of the Digital Survivorship Companion (DiSC) app and online platform will provide an information hub with cancer-related and wellbeing information. This technology will enable two-way, real-time exchange between young cancer survivors/families and their healthcare providers and provide a roadmap for end-of-treatment and survivorship care. It will facilitate equitable access to clinical trials including delivery of trial information, remote recruitment, monitoring and survivorship interventions.

"This funding will allow us to develop a novel digital health solution for end-of-treatment care and build capacity for supportive care and survivorship clinical trials for children and young people affected by cancer and their families."

What is the need?

Five-year survival rates in paediatric cancers have increased to 80%. Despite improved survival outcomes, children and adolescents treated for cancer are at risk of developing long-term physical and psychosocial difficulties related to their disease or treatment. Referred to as ‘late effects’, these may emerge over months or even years following the end of treatment.

Currently, young people and their families receive little information and guidance about these late effects and there are very few clinical trials designed to improve quality of life outcomes. Furthermore, end of treatment care tends to be fragmented and many patients are lost to survivorship follow-up.

The DiSC app and online platform will address the unmet needs of patients and families, providing tailored information about their treatment history and health related impacts of treatment. This app will be designed to facilitate supportive care and survivorship trials.

Project timeline

  • 2022
    Develop the Digital Survivorship Companion app and online platform and pilot test the app with consumers and healthcare professionals.
  • 2023
    Develop the Digital Survivorship Companion app and online platform and pilot test the app with consumers and healthcare professionals.
  • 2024
    Complete final revision of DiSC app and online platform and disseminate findings from this project.

 

Victorian Cancer Agency

The Cancer Trials Management Scheme is funded by Cancer Council Victoria and the Victorian Government through the Victorian Cancer Agency.