Delays in the Surgical Pathway in Breast Cancer Patients in Tunisia: A Descriptive Prospective Study
Objectives: Describe the surgical pathway and identify the different waiting times to surgery of women with a breast cancer in the Gynecology Department of the University Hospital of Sousse in Tunisia.
Methods: It is a descriptive prospective study based on an assessment of professional practices using the process approach method. The study focused on the surgical management of women with breast cancer followed and scheduled for surgical treatment. The data were collected using a data collection sheet, developed according to a literature review.
Results: The sample consisted of 77 women. Ten waiting times have been calculated. Global time to first treatment (surgical treatment) was 78.5 days with an Interquartile range (IIQ) of [55.5-113.25 days]. The information period was 10 days with an IIQ of [3-19 days]. The global time of access to surgery was 43.5 days with an IIQ of [40-54.75].
Conclusion: Delays in access to care appear to be a potential marker of inequalities in access to care and an indicator of the performance of the health care system and can influence patient prognosis. The reduction of these delays must be integrated into a continuous quality improvement approach.