Policymakers' and patients’ perspectives on breast cancer management in the Gaza Strip-Palestine: A qualitative study

Mo'min Khalil Eid, Hammoda Abu-Odah, Dalia Talaat Wehedi, Jing Jing Su, Yehia Abed

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review


Purpose: This study aimed to explore the perspectives of policymakers and patients on breast cancer (BC) management in the Gaza Strip. Methods: A descriptive qualitative study design was employed using semi-structured in-depth interviews with 13 policymakers and focus group discussions with 19 BC patients. The four criteria presented by Lincoln and Guba were used to evaluate the validity and reliability. Data were analysed using conventional content analysis approach. Results: Three categories were generated from the qualitative data analysis: (1) limited human resources in the BC management, (2) inadequate institutional level service provision in the BC management, and (3) a lack of policy level support for the BC management. The current health services provided to Gazan BC patients are either fragmented or partially unavailable. The roles and responsibilities at the policy, system and individual levels were ambiguous. Policymakers attributed the fragmented BC services to the shortage of qualified healthcare professionals, inadequate training programmes for the staff, and lack of coordination among health institutions. Some patients expressed an insufficient knowledge about cancer screening tests, while others ignored screening for cultural reasons. Conclusion: Gaza's BC services are fragmented and not well-organised and they have received inadequate attention at the leadership and governance levels. The government in the Gaza Strip should strengthen its leadership to upgrade and develop the policies and strategies necessary for proper BC management, including an improved information system and cooperation with national and international institutions to secure funding for developing BC services and ensure medication availability.

Original languageEnglish
Article number102223
JournalEuropean Journal of Oncology Nursing
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2022


  • Breast cancer
  • Evaluation of services
  • Gaza
  • Policymakers
  • Qualitative study

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology(nursing)


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