TrueNTH is a global initiative, led by the Movember Foundation, tackling critical areas of prostate cancer care. The international network of representatives includes clinicians, academics, patients and organisations from across the UK, Canada, Australia and other countries. Through this initiative we’re working together to identify and demonstrate the best and most cost-effective models for improving prostate cancer survivorship care and support.

The aim

TrueNTH seeks to significantly improve the lives and experiences of men with prostate cancer, as well as the experience of their partners, carers and family members.

Fundamentally, the programme is about making a step change in survivorship outcomes for men with prostate cancer. The partnership will improve the way in which we all work together to address the needs of men along all points of their cancer journey, helping them achieve a good quality of life and to feel knowledgeable and confident about managing their condition.

Success will be seen as widespread adoption of new models of care that show marked improvements in outcomes for men.

We believe this will be achieved by:

  • demonstration – what we’ve done and how
  • evidence – proof of impact
  • dissemination and engagement – sharing and supporting learning

TrueNTH in the UK

In the UK, the TrueNTH partnership of healthcare professionals, academics and volunteers is being managed by Prostate Cancer UK. 

It’s a three year programme, with five ground-breaking survivorship projects, selected because of the need for significant improvement in each area and their potential to make the biggest impact on the lives of men living with prostate cancer.

The five projects are listed below. There may be opportunities to get involved in and support these projects. If you have a specific enquiry about TrueNTH or one of the above projects, please email professionals@prostatecanceruk.org

TrueNTH Decision support

Project Lead: Lucy Brindle, Associate Professor in Early Diagnosis Research, University of Southampton
End date: December 2017

The problem

Since treatment options for prostate cancer can be varied and complex, making a 'no-regrets' decision about treatment can be very difficult. This is even more difficult if the treatment options and associated side effects are not set out clearly and not tailored for the individual patient.

How TrueNTH is confronting it

This is part of a global TrueNTH aim to develop a treatment 'decision aid' for men with localised, low-to-intermediate risk prostate cancer. The ultimate aim is to develop tools for men with high risk cancer too. The project will also develop training for health professionals so they are able to provide the best support for men making a treatment decision.

TrueNTH Exercise and diet

Project Lead: Sara Faithfull, Professor of Cancer Nursing Practice, University of Surrey
End date: March 2017

The problem

We know that exercise and diet can have a huge impact on health and wellbeing. However, sometimes men lack the tools, knowledge and structures to put this into practice. Obesity and lack of exercise can be common issues after prostate cancer treatment. In addition, men on hormone therapy are at increased risk of cardiovascular problems because of how hormone changes affect the metabolisation and storage of fats.

How TrueNTH is confronting it

This project will support men through their recovery by:

  • helping them and their families understand the risks associated with their lifestyle and encouraging them to make changes where needed.
  • providing men with resources to inspire healthy living such as a pedometer, exercise DVDs, recipes and information on local activities.
  • new online technology, such as online trackers which can help structure and monitor activity.
  • testing if the provision of personal lifestyle prescription and advice to men by community pharmacists will improve outcomes

TrueNTH Supported self management

Project Lead: Alison Richardson, Clinical Professor of Cancer Nursing and End of Life Care, University of Southampton
End date: July 2017

The problem

Research shows that a significant proportion of men feel abandoned by the healthcare system after their initial treatment has been completed. They feel that they receive poorly structured follow up care which fails to identify their specific needs.

How TrueNTH is confronting it

Men's specific needs after treatment need to be identified, giving them the tools and knowledge to better manage their own recovery. The programme will:

  • implement the very latest technology to link the man to his care team without the need for expensive hospital based follow ups
  • quickly and clearly identify who needs help, saving time and creating a more efficient care system.

TrueNTH Post surgery follow up

Project Lead: Caroline Moore, Senior Clinical Researcher and Honorary Consultant, University College London (Division of Surgery)
End date: February 2018

The problem

Men can experience a range of side effects after surgery to remove the prostate, some of which will be short term and others which may have a longer impact. However, we don’t know whether different groups of men will have better or worse outcomes after surgery. If this was known, it could be useful to help inform men who are choosing between different treatments,

How TrueNTH is confronting it

The aim of the study is to develop and evaluate a survey that could be routinely used to monitor the patient reported outcomes of surgery i.e. the impact of surgery on men’s lives. This will involve:

  • Comparing existing surveys to see which can best rate side effects, before surgery, and at 3, 6 and 12 months after surgery
  • Developing and testing a new survey
  • Using the results of the surveys to determine whether certain groups of men have better or worse outcomes after prostate removal surgery
  • Helping men track their recovery progress over time

TrueNTH Needs assessment

Project Lead: Veronica Nanton, Senior Research Fellow, Warwick Medical School, University of Warwick
Duration: 1 year
End date: October 2016

The project is complete and the team are working to integrate the assessment with the Supported self management project.

The problem

There is not currently a Holistic Needs Assessment that is sufficient and aimed at men with prostate cancer. Existing assessment tools either don’t ask the correct questions for prostate cancer or are paper based and difficult to complete in a clinical setting. This HNA tool will look at offering an intuitive route to aid the delivery of TrueNTH Supported self management project

How TrueNTH is confronting it

The aim of this study is to develop and then test the feasibility and acceptability of an electronic prostate cancer-specific Holistic Needs Assessment instrument. Men living with prostate cancer will be able to use the tool to identify any unmet needs which they can then flag to their healthcare professional. We will assess the tool by collecting qualitative data using semi-structured interviews.

 

TrueNTH Continence management

Project Lead: Mandy Fader, Dean of the Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Southampton
End date: May 2017

The problem

Incontinence is one of the most commonly cited problems for men after prostate cancer treatment, with some men enduring lifelong urinary incontinence.
Some men are unable to access the products they need to manage their continence because they are unaware of them or because they are unavailable. Furthermore, many services and products aren't adequately designed to fully meet their needs. This can have a huge impact on their lifestyles and can also impact the people around them.

How TrueNTH is confronting it

This programme will:

  • develop and test new continence products based on what men have said they want and need
  • deliver a range of incontinence solutions to meet the breadth of men’s needs via a web/print intervention and personalised budget

It will ultimately lead to:

  • better information about what continence products are available
  • better provision of continence products tailored to men’s personal needs
  • better products that are innovative, effective and acceptable.

TrueNTH Post-radiation follow up

Project Lead: John Staffurth, Clinical Senior Lecturer, Cardiff University
End date: June 2017

The problem

40% of men treated with radical radiotherapy for prostate cancer have a change in bowel function that affects their quality of life, with 20% reporting a severe impact on quality of life.

How TrueNTH is confronting it

To tackle this, this initiative looks to:

  • improve the whole patient journey, from identifying patients at risk of bowel side effects at an early stage, to better follow-up and monitoring after treatment
  • provide training and support to health organisations to make these improvements in care a reality
  • assist those centres which have developed their expertise in sharing best practice with others, and improving care across their region as a result.

TrueNTH Sexual Health

Project Lead: Eilís McCaughan, Professor in Cancer Care, Ulster University
End date: Nov 19

The problem

Prostate cancer and its treatments are associated with high levels of sexual dysfunction, in particular, erectile dysfunction and penile shrinkage. Such problems are life changing as they are almost certain to lead to anxiety, low self-esteem and reduced quality of life for men. Relationships between men and their partners will inevitably be tested. Just as crucially, the general loss of confidence is likely to affect men in their daily lives.

How TrueNTH is confronting it

To tackle this, this initiative looks to:

  • Develop an assessment tool to enable healthcare practitioners to routinely and consistently engage with men and start to address the psychosexual issues that they and their partners face
  • Training for healthcare professionals to acquire the skills and knowledge to offer appropriate care to address the psycho-sexual needs of men and their partners
  • Learning modules for men and their partners to understand and manage the psychosexual problems they may experience (adapted from the TrueNTH USA project)
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