Publication Date



cancer screening, cancer prevention, clinical decision support, primary care, qualitative research, decision-making


Purpose: We sought to gain an understanding of cancer prevention and screening perspectives among patients exposed to a clinical decision support (CDS) tool because they were due or overdue for certain cancer screenings or prevention.

Methods: Semi-structured qualitative interviews were conducted with 37 adult patients due or overdue for cancer prevention services in 10 primary care clinics within the same health system. Data were thematically segmented and coded using qualitative content analysis.

Results: We identified three themes: 1) The CDS tool had more strengths than weaknesses, with areas for improvement; 2) Many facilitators and barriers to cancer prevention and screening exist; and 3) Discussions and decision-making varied by type of cancer prevention and screening. Almost all participants made positive comments regarding the CDS. Some participants learned new information, reporting the CDS helped them make a decision they otherwise would not have made. Participants who used the tool with their provider had higher self-reported rates of deciding to be screened than those who did not.

Conclusions: Learning about patients’ perceptions of a CDS tool may increase understanding of how patient-tailored CDS impacts cancer screening and prevention rates. Participants found a personalized CDS tool for cancer screening and prevention in primary care useful and a welcome addition to their visit. However, many providers were not using the tool with eligible patients.

Figure S1.pdf (313 kB)
Supplemental Figure S1

Figure S2.pdf (289 kB)
Supplemental Figure S2

Appendix A.pdf (104 kB)
Online Appendix A

Appendix B.pdf (98 kB)
Online Appendix B




March 17th, 2021


May 21st, 2021


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