Impact of Visiting Community-Based Psychosocial Support Centres on the Well-Being of Cancer Patients: Exploration of Evaluation and Effects


Community-Based Support Centers
Health Complains
Health Quality of Life


How to Cite

Visser A. Impact of Visiting Community-Based Psychosocial Support Centres on the Well-Being of Cancer Patients: Exploration of Evaluation and Effects. Integr J Med Sci [Internet]. 2020 Dec. 21 [cited 2024 Jun. 15];8. Available from:


Aim: Community-based psychosocial support centres for cancer patients and their relatives (CBPSCs) in the Netherlands offer easily accessible contacts with fellow patients and support by trained volunteers and/or professionals. We studied if the participants in the social support and/or therapy activities are satisfied with these services and if the visits do affect their well-being in terms of bodily and emotional health and their health quality of life (HQoL).
Methods:  In 25 CBPSCs, 701visitors filled out a web-based questionnaire about  their experiences with CBPSCs. Within this sample, 203 participants answered a part of the questionnaire again after 3-5 months about their personal characteristics, the type participation  at the visits, their satisfaction with the offered activities, the experienced health complains, and  three HQoL questions of the EORTC measure.
Results: The study confirms the significance of CBPSCs contacts with fellow patients, resulting in satisfaction with the increased communication about their illness and talks about their problems. The results show further that after a 3-5 months the health complains did not change, but the HQoL decreased significantly for all  visitors, except  for more serious ill patients in comparison with less ill patients.                                                              
Discussion and conclusion CBPSCs play an important and highly evaluated role in psycho-oncological support. The visit for serious ill patients may function as a buffer for preventing the decrease of their HQoL. Insight in effects of such visits is still limited in other studies. Differences in the health care organization restrict the comparability with the CBPSCs in other countries. More studies are needed to show the long-term effects of CBPSCs visits.


Li M, Hales S, Rodin G. Adjustment disorders in: Holland et al. Psycho-oncology, Oxford University Press, New York; 2015: 274-279.

Schrameijer F, Brunenberg. Psychosociale zorg bij kanker. Patiënten en hulpverleners over problemen en hulpaanbod. (Dutch; Psychosocial care for cancer: patients and caregivers about problems offer of help). Nederlands Centrum Geestelijke Volksgezondheid. Utrecht, the Netherlands.

Holland JC, Breitbart WS, Butow PN, Jacobsen PB, Loscalzo MJ, McCorkle R. Psycho-oncology. Oxford University Press; New York, USA: 2015.

Kreitler, S. Psycho-oncology for the clinician: The patient behind the disease. Springer, Cham, Switzerland. 2019.

De Haes H, Gualtherie van Wezel L, Sanderman R. Psychologische patiëntenzorg in de oncologie (Dutch; Psychological patient care in the oncology). Gorcum B.V, Assen, the Netherlands. 2017.

Watson MJ, Kissane D. (eds.) Handbook of psychotherapy in cancer care. Hoboken, Wily-Blackwell, UK; 2011.

Janmaat M, Kieviet-Stijnen A, Visser A, Pet A, Garssen B. Ervaringsgerichte groepen voor mensen met kanker: Evaluatie en veranderingen in welbevinden (Dutch; Experienced centeredgroups for people with cancer: Evaluation and changes in well-being). Tijdschr. Groepsdynam. Groepspsychoth. 2008: 3;7-20.

Remie M, Zoeteman M, Brommer-Fogaras J, Maex E, Visser A, Garssen B. Ruimte voor jezelf: Evaluatie groepsbegeleiding voor mensen met kanker door het Helen Dowling Instituut (Dutch; Evaluation group support for people with cancer). Utrecht: Helen Dowling Instituut. 2000.

Andrykowski MA, Manne SL.Are psychological interventions effective and accepted by cancer patients? Ann Behav Med. 2006 Oct;32(2):93-7.

Harrison JD, Young JM, Price MA, Butow PN, Solomon MJ. What are the unmet supportive care needs of people with cancer? A systematic review. Support Care Cancer. 2009 Aug;17(8):1117-28.

Holland JC. History of psycho-oncology: Overcoming attitudinal and conceptual barriers. Psychosom Med. 2002 Mar-Apr;64(2):206-21.

Holland JC. IPOS Suterland Memorial Lecture. Overcoming cultural and attitudinal barriers improve psychosocial care. Psychooncology. 2004 Jul;13(7):445-59.

Visser A, Geluk N, Breed W, Van Leeuwen N, Van H, Van Liempt H, et al. Reactie van A. Visser, W. Breed, W. Geluk, N. van Leeuwen, H. van Liempt, E. Bossema, L. Nieuwenhuizen en A. van der Aa op de editorial van M. van der Linden. Ned Tijdschr Oncol 2009;6:247. Available from:

Visser A, Breed W, Geluk N, Bossema L, Nieuwenhuizen A, van der Aa, et al. De betekenis van inloophuizen voor mensen met kanker en hun naasten: ontstaan, gebruik, behoefte en waardering (Dutch; The meaning of walking-in homes for people with cancer and their relatives). Nederl Tijdschr Oncol. 2009; 6: 248-255. Available from:

Visser AM, Wildenbeest L, Nieuwenhuizen. Evaluation of psychosocial support for people with cancer. Med Encount. 2012;26 (2):19-21.

Maggie’ Centers, healing architecture? The Guardian, 6 My 2010; retrieved 24 June 2015. Inspiration of Maggie’ Centres. Brit Med J. 2006; 333:1304.

Www. Anderson cancer, retrieved November 15, 2020. Research on prevention (smoking), immunotherapy, medical technology.

Www. Memorial SloanKettering Cancer Center. Retrieved November 15, 2020. Mainly biological oriented cancer research.

Volmer T, Koppen G. Unter welchem Dach liegt die Zukunft der Psychoonkologie ? (German; Under which roof stays the future of the psycho-oncolgy?). Infoonkologie. 2008; 11:591-594.

Skirbekk H, Korsvold L, Finset A. To support and to be supported: A qualitive study of peer support centers in cancer in Norway. Patient Educ Couns. 2018 Apr;101(4):711-716.

Brom A, van den R, den Hollander AP, Visser. Onderzoek naarInloophuizen in het buitenland voor mensen met kanker en hun naasten(Dutch; Walking-in homes in foreign countries for people with cancer and their relatives). Tijdschr Psychosoc Oncol. 2014;23 (4): 26-27.

Visser AP. Community-based psychosocial support centres for cancerpatients and their relatives: use, evaluation and effect. Manuscript submitted. 2020.

Aaronson NK, Ahmedzai S, Bergman B, Bullinger M, Cull A, Duez NJ, et al. The European Organization for Research and Treatment of Cancer QLQ-C30: a quality-of-life instrument for use in international clinical trials in oncology. J Natl Cancer Inst. 1993 Mar 3;85(5):365-76.

Aaronson NK, Ahmedzai S, Bergman B, Bullinger M, Cull A, Duez NJ, et al. The European Organization for Research and Treatment of Cancer QLQ-C30: A quality-of-lifeinstrument for use in international clinical trials in oncology. J Nat Cancer Inst. 1993; 85: 365-376.

Tuinman M, Gazendam-Donofrio S, Hoekstra-Weebers J. Screening and Referral for psychosocial distress in oncologic practice: use of the Distress Thermometer. Cancer. 2008 Aug 15;113(4):870-8.

Osse BH, Vernooij-Dassen MJ, Schadé E, Grol RP. The problems experienced by patients with cancer and their needs for palliative care. Support Care Cancer. 2005 Sep;13(9):722-32.

Stege HA, Van der, Visser AP, Vahedi Nikabakht-Van de Sande R. den Hollander, van den Brom A. Evaluatie van het bezoek aaninloophuizen door mensen met kanker en hun naasten. (Dutch; Evaluation of the visit of walking-in-homes by people with cancer and their relatives). Hogeschool Rotterdam, Kenniscentrum Zorginnovatie. Rotterdam, the Netherlands. 2014.

Creative Commons License

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

Copyright (c) 2021 Visser A


Download data is not yet available.


Metrics Loading ...