An assessment of patient navigator activities in breast cancer patient navigation programs using a nine-principle framework.

Academic Article


  • OBJECTIVE: To determine how closely a published model of navigation reflects the practice of navigation in breast cancer patient navigation programs. DATA SOURCE: Observational field notes describing patient navigator activities collected from 10 purposefully sampled, foundation-funded breast cancer navigation programs in 2008-2009. STUDY DESIGN: An exploratory study evaluated a model framework for patient navigation published by Harold Freeman by using an a priori coding scheme based on model domains. DATA COLLECTION: Field notes were compiled and coded. Inductive codes were added during analysis to characterize activities not included in the original model. PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Programs were consistent with individual-level principles representing tasks focused on individual patients. There was variation with respect to program-level principles that related to program organization and structure. Program characteristics such as the use of volunteer or clinical navigators were identified as contributors to patterns of model concordance. CONCLUSIONS: This research provides a framework for defining the navigator role as focused on eliminating barriers through the provision of individual-level interventions. The diversity observed at the program level in these programs was a reflection of implementation according to target population. Further guidance may be required to assist patient navigation programs to define and tailor goals and measurement to community needs.
  • Authors

  • Gunn, Christine M
  • Clark, Jack A
  • Battaglia, Tracy A
  • Freund, Karen M
  • Parker, Victoria
  • Status

    Publication Date

  • October 2014
  • Published In


  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Breast Neoplasms
  • Case Management
  • Female
  • Health Services Accessibility
  • Health Services Needs and Demand
  • Healthcare Disparities
  • Humans
  • Middle Aged
  • Patient Education as Topic
  • Patient Navigation
  • Patient navigation
  • Patient-Centered Care
  • United States
  • breast cancer
  • disparities
  • patient-centered care
  • Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Start Page

  • 1555
  • End Page

  • 1577
  • Volume

  • 49
  • Issue

  • 5