DOI: 10.1093/jamia/ocad243 ISSN: 1067-5027

Barriers and facilitators to the implementation of family cancer history collection tools in oncology clinical practices

Caitlin G Allen, Grace Neil, Chanita Hughes Halbert, Katherine R Sterba, Paul J Nietert, Brandon Welch, Leslie Lenert
  • Health Informatics



This study aimed to identify barriers and facilitators to the implementation of family cancer history (FCH) collection tools in clinical practices and community settings by assessing clinicians’ perceptions of implementing a chatbot interface to collect FCH information and provide personalized results to patients and providers.


By identifying design and implementation features that facilitate tool adoption and integration into clinical workflows, this study can inform future FCH tool development and adoption in healthcare settings.

Materials and methods

Quantitative data were collected using survey to evaluate the implementation outcomes of acceptability, adoption, appropriateness, feasibility, and sustainability of the chatbot tool for collecting FCH. Semistructured interviews were conducted to gather qualitative data on respondents' experiences using the tool and recommendations for enhancements.


We completed data collection with 19 providers (n = 9, 47%), clinical staff (n = 5, 26%), administrators (n = 4, 21%), and other staff (n = 1, 5%) affiliated with the NCI Community Oncology Research Program. FCH was systematically collected using a wide range of tools at sites, with information being inserted into the patient’s medical record. Participants found the chatbot tool to be highly acceptable, with the tool aligning with existing workflows, and were open to adopting the tool into their practice.

Discussion and conclusions

We further the evidence base about the appropriateness of scripted chatbots to support FCH collection. Although the tool had strong support, the varying clinical workflows across clinic sites necessitate that future FCH tool development accommodates customizable implementation strategies. Implementation support is necessary to overcome technical and logistical barriers to enhance the uptake of FCH tools in clinical practices and community settings.

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