Addressing survivorship and palliative care needs in children and adolescents with brain cancer

Associate Professor Natalie Bradford

Dr Natalie Bradford
(Queensland University of Technology Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation)

In addition to the potential for premature death, children with brain cancer and their families also deal with potential long-term side effects including seizures, cognitive deficits, pain and fatigue.

For parents and carers, balancing the needs of an acutely unwell child along with the competing demands of family life is a tension not well understood.

These aspects of the childhood cancer experience are often neglected in the healthcare system – and yet, they have serious and profound impacts on kids and families.

The research

A/Prof Bradford will conduct desperately needed research into the diverse needs of paediatric brain cancer patients and their families during and after treatment, as well as the service models which can provide tailored and effective interventions to meet those needs.

Vitally, this research will involve extensive consultation with patients and families, plus interdisciplinary health care teams, service managers and policy makers.

The potential outcomes

Evidence gained during the consultation process will be used to inform the development and implementation of sustainable services for paediatric brain cancer patients and families to address unmet need, improve equity of access and reduce variation in long-term health outcomes.

The research team

A/Prof Natalie Bradford

Queensland University of Technology – Cancer and Palliative Care Outcomes Centre, Principal Research Fellow, NHMRC Investigator Fellow

Dr Stuart Ekberg

Queensland University of Technology – School of Psychology & Counselling, Senior Research Fellow (ARC Discovery Early Career Researcher Award)

Dr David Brain

Queensland University of Technology – Australian Centre for Health Services Innovation (AUSHSI), Research Fellow

Dr Erin Pitt

Senior Research Assistant, Cancer and Palliative Care Outcomes Centre

Dr Kate Young

Cancer and Palliative Care Outcomes Centre, Research Fellow

Dr Timothy Hassall

Children’s Health Queensland Hospital and Health  Service, Oncologist, CBCC Program Director, Clinical Investigator

Ms Haley Bell

PhD Candidate