In Pennsylvania, cancer patients experience disparate cancer-related health outcomes. Patient navigation, a patient-centered evidence-based approach effectively addresses barriers to care, and reduces cancer-related disparities and burden. We performed a literature search with specific inclusion and exclusion criteria to identify literature emanating from the United States which potentially described the development, efficacy and cost effectiveness of patient navigation across the United States and in Pennsylvania. The results from this review signified that, over last two decades there has been a rapid growth in the field of patient navigation programs across the United States which includes the state of Pennsylvania. However, despite the presence of these programs and navigators, Pennsylvania does not have state-wide guidelines which could define patient navigation and recognizes a patient navigators as well as roles and responsibilities. This paper calls for a policy-based approach to recognize and standardize patient navigation in Pennsylvania. We recommend the Pennsylvania Department of Health propose legislation which would help define patient navigation and patient navigator. We also urge various organizations, policy makers, state and private insurers, and funding agencies in Pennsylvania to recognize, acquire, and cultivate a culture of patient-centeredness through patient navigation.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Health Policy