Evaluating a Volunteer Cancer Support Service

Linda J. Edgar, Jean Remmer, Zeev Rosberger, Bruce Rapkin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Scopus citations


Hope and Cope, a voluntary self-help organization for cancer patients and their families, was evaluated as part of a randomized controlled clinical trial of newly diagnosed patients with breast or colon cancer. Measures of psychosocial distress, functional well-being, and optimism were evaluated four months after diagnosis (Time 1) and eight months later (Time 2). There were differences between the users and nonusers at Time 1: Users of Hope and Cope had greater needs but became more satisfied regarding resolution of their needs at Time 2 than did nonparticipants. The outcome of physical well-being was significantly better for those who took part in Hope and Cope. Participants of voluntary support organizations appear to make appropriate choices on the basis of their needs. Issues of patients' preference have not been given sufficient attention in psychosocial oncology research and may influence the results of such studies.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)53-72
Number of pages20
JournalJournal of Psychosocial Oncology
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2003
Externally publishedYes


  • Evaluation research
  • Newly diagnosed patients
  • Program users and nonusers
  • Voluntary support services

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Applied Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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