Cancer survivorship and agency model: Implications for patient choice, decision making, and influence

Dan O'Hair, Melinda M. Villagran, Elaine Wittenberg, Kenneth Brown, Monica Ferguson, Harry T. Hall, Timothy Doty

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

53 Scopus citations


Relative to other types of health communication research (acute care physician-patient communication, communication campaigns, compliance episodes, etc.), investigations of patient communication following the diagnosis of cancer are infrequent. Theoretically driven, empirical research is desperately needed in such postdiagnostic communication processes as survivorship, quality of life, palliative and hospice care, and loss, bereavement, and grief for those millions of people who have been diagnosed with the second leading cause of death in our nation. An organizational model of patient communication is needed that identifies and describes salient issues and processes involved when cancer patients attempt to negotiate the difficult courses of action following the diagnosis of cancer. The cancer survivorship and agency model (CSAM) proposes both general and specific strategies that serve as options for patients seeking to take greater control of the decision-making process related to their treatment and care of cancer. Although seemingly practical in its offering, CSAM is intended to serve as a heuristic springboard for theoretically based, applied communication research focusing exclusively on post diagnostic cancer processes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)193-202
Number of pages10
JournalHealth Communication
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2003

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • Communication


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