Adolescents and young adults diagnosed with cancer have poorer treatment and survivorship outcomes than either younger or older cancer patients. This population also has psychosocial late effects and engages in lifestyle behaviors that increase their risk of subsequent cancer and other chronic illnesses. Thus, there is a need to identify protective factors during the diagnosis and treatment period to foster healthy lifestyle behaviors and resilience. Connectedness with healthcare providers is a potential protective factor that may diminish risk-taking behaviors and promote resilience in adolescents. However, there is a gap in literature regarding adolescents/young adult cancer survivors' perceptions of: how connectedness with a healthcare provider is fostered; how connectedness during and after treatment influences subsequent healthcare self-management; and what it means to be connected to a healthcare provider. A necessary first step in a program of research on adolescent patient-provider connectedness is to describe the experience of connectedness that adolescents/young adults have with health care providers.
The specific aim of this study is to describe young adult cancer survivors' (ages 18 - 24 years) experiences of connectedness with their healthcare providers as they negotiated the experience across the cancer continuum from diagnosis to survivorship during adolescence (ages 15-21 years). An empirical phenomenology method will be used. Findings will provide information necessary to develop future interventions to enhance adolescent patient-provider connectedness that may ultimately diminish risk-taking behaviors and promote resilience in adolescents with cancer. PhD coursework, conferences, workshops, participation on interdisciplinary research teams, and close monitoring by the applicant's sponsor on a bi-weekly basis is proposed in the structured plan to achieve the study aim. Consistent with the mission of the National Institute of Nursing Research, the proposed training plan is designed to enhance the development of essential knowledge and research skills necessary for the applicant to meet her career goal of becoming an established researcher in an academic setting who is focused on improving adolescent patient-provider connectedness and survivorship outcomes of adolescents with cancer. Relevance: Adolescents and young adults with cancer have poorer outcomes than younger children or older adults. This research will provide information to plan interventions based on young adult cancer survivors' perceptions of connectedness with their healthcare providers that are necessary to foster healthcare self-management and resilience. ? ? ?

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Institute of Nursing Research (NINR)
Predoctoral Individual National Research Service Award (F31)
Project #
Application #
Study Section
National Institute of Nursing Research Initial Review Group (NRRC)
Program Officer
Jett, Kathleen
Project Start
Project End
Budget Start
Budget End
Support Year
Fiscal Year
Total Cost
Indirect Cost
Indiana University-Purdue University at Indianapolis
Public Health & Prev Medicine
Schools of Nursing
United States
Zip Code
Phillips-Salimi, Celeste R; Robb, Sheri L; Monahan, Patrick O et al. (2014) Perceptions of communication, family adaptability and cohesion: a comparison of adolescents newly diagnosed with cancer and their parents. Int J Adolesc Med Health 26:19-26
Phillips-Salimi, Celeste R; Haase, Joan E; Kooken, Wendy Carter (2012) Connectedness in the context of patient-provider relationships: a concept analysis. J Adv Nurs 68:230-45
Phillips-Salimi, Celeste R; Donovan Stickler, Molly A; Stegenga, Kristin et al. (2011) Principles and strategies for monitoring data collection integrity in a multi-site randomized clinical trial of a behavioral intervention. Res Nurs Health 34:362-71