New Talk About It Resources Aim to Accelerate Integration of Mental Health into Quality Cancer Care
Feb 03, 2023 7:00 AM
BeiGene Releases Report and Launches CancerandMentalHealth.com in Conjunction with World Cancer Day to Help Patients and Caregivers Overcome Barriers to Access
Today’s announcement was made in celebration of World Cancer Day on
Data shows that as many as one-quarter of people living with cancer are also living with depression and up to 20% with anxiety.i With support from
Emotional Distress is Prevalent Across the Cancer Continuum:
- Emotional distress is highest during diagnosis, treatment, and recurrence, but even those who are in post-treatment or have no current evidence of disease are often affected.
Many Patients & Survivors Are Not Receiving Mental Health Support:
- 60% of respondents were not referred to a mental health professional by their cancer care team, and two in five who specifically wanted or sought mental health support did not receive it.
- Of the 41% of respondents on medication for anxiety and 34% for depression, one-third indicated they did not receive professional counseling for emotional and mental health concerns.
Significant Barriers to Obtaining Mental Health Care Exist:
- Attitudinal barriers included wanting to solve the problem on their own (45%), thinking the problem would get better by itself (24%) and concerns about the treatments available (e.g., medication side effects) (22%).
- Instrumental barriers included inability to afford the cost (26%), being unsure where to find care (19%) and difficulty taking time off work (12%).
- Treatment stigma barriers included concern about being seen as weak (16%), not wanting mental health care on medical records (13%) and feeling embarrassed or ashamed (12%).
Patients Desire Interventions to Complement Both Medication and Counseling:
- 48% of respondents were prescribed depression or anxiety medication, but many wanted other services and activities to help reduce distress and improve emotional well-being, such as exercise (66%), meditation classes (62%), nutrition programs (61%), and support groups (60%).
These and other findings are included in the report released today. Additionally, the new CancerandMentalHealth.com website curates mental health resources for people living with cancer, their caregivers, healthcare providers and advocates.
“BeiGene believes in the importance of treating cancer holistically, with mental health being a vital part of comprehensive cancer care,” said
CancerandMentalHealth.com features digital and printable resources for patients, caregivers and healthcare professionals that highlight the impact of a cancer diagnosis on emotional wellness. The website also provides links to resources offered by leading advocacy organizations to help patients and caregivers navigate their mental health care needs, including support helplines, online communities, and local support groups.
“Cancer is an overwhelming experience, and the abrupt transition into a world of treatment and testing can cause mental health needs to take a back seat,” said
With guidance from an advisory panel of experts in mental health, oncology, patient advocacy, and behavioral science,
“Throughout my career as an oncology social worker, I have witnessed how mental health care services can improve emotional well-being during the cancer journey, as well as adherence to treatment plans and overall quality of life,” said
About Talk About It:
This press release contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 and other federal securities laws, including statements regarding the ability for BeiGene’s Talk About It:
i Krebber et al. (2013). Prevalence of depression in cancer patients: a meta-analysis of diagnostic interviews and self-report instruments. Psycho-oncology, 23(2), 121-30; Mitchell, A. J., Ferguson, D. W., Gill, J., Paul, J., & Symonds, P. (2013). Depression and anxiety in long-term cancer survivors compared with spouses and healthy controls: a systematic review and meta-analysis.
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