PURPOSE To study factors that have an impact on the conduct of high-quality goals of care (GoC) discussions and productivity of oncologists among four different practice settings in patients with advanced cancer. METHODS Solid-tumor oncologists from community, academic, municipal, and rural hospitals were randomly assigned to receive a coaching model of communication skills to help them facilitate a GoC discussion with newly diagnosed patients with advanced cancer who had a less-than-2-year prognosis. Patients were surveyed after the first restaging visit regarding the quality of the GoC discussion on a scale of 0 to 10 (0, worst; 10, best) with a score of 8 or better indicating a high-quality GoC discussion. Productivity was measured by work revenue value units (wRVUs) per hour for the day each oncologist saw the study patient after imaging. RESULTS The four sites differed significantly in the socioeconomic patient populations they served and in the characteristics of the oncologists who cared for the patients. Overall median productivity across the four sites was 3.6 wRVU/hour, with the highest observed in the community hospital (4.3 wRVU/hour) and the lowest in the rural setting (2.9 wRVU/hour; P <.001). There was no significant difference in productivity observed when highquality GOC discussion occurred versus when it did not (3.6 v 3.7 wRVU/hour; P = .86). CONCLUSION Despite differences in patient populations and oncologists' characteristics between the four practice settings, the conduct of high-quality GoC discussions did not affect productivity.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)E290-E297
JournalJournal of Oncology Practice
Issue number3
StatePublished - 1 Mar 2020


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