The American ‘Patterns of Care’ Study: A Model for the Assessment of the Quality of Patient Care in Radiation Oncology Academic Article uri icon


  • There are well documented manpower and equipment deficiencies in the specialty of Radiation Oncology in Australia. These deficiencies persist despite numerous reports over the last decade detailing their existence. The Patterns of Care Study (PCS) from the United States of America (USA) is a unique, comprehensive review of Radiation Oncology services in that country. It has clearly demonstrated that substantial benefits not only in survival but also in reduced treatment morbidity accrue when a full range of modern techniques and equipment is used. The present paper is a review of the PCS: this study has immense implications for patient care in particular and cancer services in general, in Australia. There seems little point in continuing to fund cancer research in the hope of gains in survival rates while continuing to ignore the fact that gains of a similar magnitude can be obtained by the maximum use of current knowledge and the provision of modern equipment.

publication date

  • November 1990