Cardio-oncology organization patterns in Italy: one size does not fit all

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Abstract

Aims

Cardio-oncology is imposing as the specialty deputed to the management of a large and rapidly increasing population of cancer patients receiving anticancer treatments with cardiovascular side effects or presenting with cardiac and oncological comorbidities. Organization patterns dramatically vary across Italy.

Methods

On the behalf of ANMCO, we have analyzed the characteristics of cardio-oncology services across different hospital types in Italy. A questionnaire was sent out to all ANMCO divisions inquiring about inner organization, workload, multidisciplinary team and inter-hospital connections.

Results

Ninety-eight centers sent back the questionnaire. We summarize different paths into four reference assistance models (sizes XL, L, M and S) according to hospital characteristics, cardio-oncology population size, specialists availability, local facilities and the hospital-surrounding network. We define sizes of the proposed pathways highlighting the need to tailor the model in each single situation.

Conclusion

No single cardio-oncology organization model can be applied to all hospitals. Each center could select the size/model that best fits its organization. Multidisciplinarity and networking play a crucial role.

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