Consumer views on a new holistic screening tool for supportive and palliative-care needs: Sheffield Profile for Assessment and Referral for Care ( SPARC): a survey of self-help support groups in health care.

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    • Abstract:
      Background Sheffield Profile for Assessment and Referral for Care ( SPARC) was developed in response to concerns that palliative care may not be reaching all people who could benefit from it. Acceptability of the tool is an important step in developing its future use. Aims To elicit the views of a wide variety of members of consumer and self-help support groups concerned with health care on the relevance, acceptability and the overall perception of using SPARC as an early holistic needs assessment tool in supportive and palliative care. Methods This study was conducted in South Yorkshire and North Derbyshire (UK). Ninety-nine consumer and self-help groups were identified from information in the public domain. Thirty-eight groups participated. Packs containing study information and self-complete postal questionnaires were distributed to groups, and they were asked to circulate these to their members. Completed questionnaires were returned in pre-paid envelopes to the research team. Results 135 questionnaires and feedback forms were returned. The majority of respondents found SPARC easy to understand (93% (120/129; 95% Confidence Interval 87% to 96%) and complete (94% (125/133; 95% CI: 88% to 97%). A minority, 12.2% (16/131), of respondents found questions on SPARC 'too sensitive'. Conclusions Overall, respondents considered SPARC an acceptable and relevant tool for clinical assessment of supportive and palliative-care needs. Whilst a small minority of people found SPARC difficult to understand (i.e. patients with cognitive impairments), most categories of service user found it relevant. Clinical studies are necessary to establish the clinical utility of SPARC. [ABSTRACT FROM AUTHOR]
    • Abstract:
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