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Providing prostate cancer survivorship care in Japan: Implications from the USA care model.

Osawa T, Wittmann D, Jimbo M, Keller ET, Namiki S, Abe T, Shinohara N, Skolarus TA. Providing prostate cancer survivorship care in Japan: Implications from the USA care model. International journal of urology : official journal of the Japanese Urological Association. 2016 Nov 1; 23(11):906-915.

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Despite an increasing number of prostate cancer survivors in Japan, the current delivery of prostate cancer survivorship care is insufficient and lacks a multidisciplinary approach. We carried out a study to characterize prostate cancer survivorship care in Japan, examine the Japanese workforce available to deliver survivorship care, introduce a conceptual framework for survivorship and identify opportunities to improve Japanese survivorship care. We systematically searched PubMed for prostate cancer survivorship care studies, including those from Japan. We also searched the internet for prostate cancer guidelines relevant to survivorship care. We found 392 articles, of which 71 were relevant, read in detail and reported here. In Japan, survivorship care is mostly provided by urologists. Primary care as a specialty does not exist in Japan, and there are no independent nurse practitioners or physician assistants to assist with survivorship care. Japanese quality of life studies characterize the long-term effects of prostate cancer treatment, but routine use of patient-reported outcomes is not common in Japan. In the USA, in light of a growing comprehensive awareness of challenges facing survivors and their providers, the American Cancer Society prostate cancer survivorship care guidelines serve as a tool for optimizing the management of long-term treatment effects and coordination of care. In order to deliver high-quality survivorship care in Japan, urologists need to establish collaborations with other disciplines within the delivery system. A multidisciplinary guideline for prostate cancer survivorship care in Japan appears warranted.

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