Skip to main content


Exploring experiences of new cancer therapies.

Exploring experiences of new cancer therapies: Understanding patient experiences and assessing unmet needs: A study protocol.

Biological and precision therapies, also known as targeted therapies, are used in cancer treatment. While these may lengthen survival they associate with various side-effects. The research on the experiences of patients who are taking, or have taken, targeted therapies is very limited. It is well established that many cancer patients/survivors have a diverse range of supportive care needs. In most healthcare systems, these needs often go unmet. No studies have investigated supportive care needs among those using such therapies. It is not known whether existing instruments capture the supportive care needs of this new patient population.

The purpose of TARGET:

The ultimate purpose of this research is to develop a supportive care needs assessment tool. For patients taking targeted therapies; the research findings will inform and shape the content for this.

Our aim:

Our aim is to assess the experiences and unmet needs of cancer patients/survivors.

We're interested in patient experiences and needs for support and care. We would like to know if anything helps/stops meeting patient needs. Also, if there are any relationships between different support needs. We want to develop a questionnaire to measure these needs.

What is a targeted therapy?: Targeted therapies are drugs that target how cancer cells grow and spread.  They are often used to treat advanced cancer.  You usually take them as a daily tablet or capsule, or receive them through a vein. They often have names that end in "mab" or "nib".

Understanding what those needs are is the first step in developing assessment questionnaires.

We have split the study into 3 work streams.

Work stream 1: Interviews with patients and professionals.

Work stream 2: Cognitive interviews with patients.

Work stream 3: Survey with patients.

Interviews will involve asking patients and professionals about their experience taking targeted therapies. Everything is confidential, and held in the strictest confidence.

The findings of the interviews, will look to develop a new care needs survey that is specific to patients. We will need to test this survey, which is why it forms part of the study. This will involve completing a survey either in paper format or online. Answers will be separate from your contact information. There will be no way to connect you to your answers.

Participants in any stream will be contributing to research. This could help better understand the support needs of people taking targeted therapies.

Our research team:

Professor Linda Sharp (Principle Investigator)

Dr Adam Todd (Principle Investigator)

Dr Lisa Crowe (Research Co-ordinator)

Dr Morven Brown (Research Associate)

Dr Alistair Greystoke (Co-Investigator)

Ms Jan Lecouturier (Co-Investigator)


Please contact us if you're interested but not sure if you are eligible, we will be able to advise.

Contact: email, call or text:, 07707 296932.





Your support today will give researchers the means to save lives.