Unmet needs of persons with cancer in pennsylvania during the period of terminal care

Peter S. Houts, Harold Harvey, Arthur J. Hartz, Mary J. Bartholomew, Joyce M. Yasko, S. Benham Kahn, Joan F. Hermann, George W. Schelzel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

96 Scopus citations


A stratified random sample of recent cancer deaths was drawn from the Pennsylvania death registry, and 433 family members or close friends were interviewed concerning unmet needs during the last month of life. It was estimated that 72% of persons who died of cancer in Pennsylvania experienced at least one unmet service need during this period. The most frequently reported was help with activities of daily living, estimated at 42% of cancer deaths, involving over 11,000 persons each year in the state. There were significantly more unmet needs during the terminal period, compared with just after diagnosis, in activities of daily living, obtaining health care, transportation, and problems with medical staff. Our findings indicate a need to increase a broad range of support programs during the terminal period, especially of home‐care services.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)627-634
Number of pages8
Issue number3
StatePublished - Aug 1 1988

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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