Informal Communities in Cancer Treatment

Project Details

Introduction: The informal social interactions that patients and their families have within hospitals form a parallel system of support that is poorly recognized or understood, yet is likely to be very significant to the experience of cancer and its treatment.

Title: Informal Communities in Cancer Treatment

Rationale: The interactions that occur outside of the formal consultation are unavoidable in the hospital setting and may involve contact with other patients, family members and staff. Recent research examining patient's interactions has demonstrated the importance of these communications, as social support, a forum to exchange information and ideas, and a gathering of people facing the same challenges.

Key Aim (s): This study aims to examine the role of interactions and relationships that occur outside of the formal consultation to explore the purposes, meanings and effects of these encounters.

Potential Impact:  Understanding the role that informal communities play in cancer care may enable patients, families and possibly also health services to recognize, value and work with the opportunities for support that are provided.


Key contact:  Matthew Grant


National Health and Medical Research Council

Research Group

Jennifer Philip

Faculty Research Themes


School Research Themes

Cancer in Medicine

Key Contact

For further information about this research, please contact the research group leader.

Department / Centre



St Vincent's Hospital

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