Background: There are few data on clinicians' perspectives regarding support for children who have a parent who has been diagnosed with breast cancer. The purpose of this study was to survey the attitudes of physicians and nurses regarding the care of children who had a parent diagnosed with breast cancer. Methods: A survey was mailed to 898 physicians and 135 nurses who were members of the Japanese Breast Cancer Society in 2009. They were asked to answer questions about their attitudes toward and current practice regarding care for children who had a parent with breast cancer. Results: A total of 340 surveys (284 physicians and 56 nurses) were used in this analysis. The mean age of the respondents was 47.2 years, and their mean number of years of practice was 21.7 years. While 69.1 % of them reported that they felt it important for people in their roles to provide support for children, 84.4 % felt they could not provide sufficient support. The results also suggested that female gender in practitioners and nurses as opposed to doctor status seemed to be associated with preference for intervention, current practice of intervention, and recognition of difficulty to support. Conclusions: Physicians and nurses express a variety of opinions with regard to support for children with a parent who has breast cancer. It is important to cooperate with other specialists including physicians, nurses, and psychologists and allocate roles appropriately among them to improve outcomes for these children.
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