Background: The purpose of this paper is to describe the Automated Heart-Health Assessment (AH-HA) study protocol, which demonstrates an agile approach to cancer care delivery research. This study aims to assess the effect of a clinical decision support tool for cancer survivors on cardiovascular health (CVH) discussions, referrals, completed visits with primary care providers and cardiologists, and control of modifiable CVH factors and behaviors. The COVID-19 pandemic has caused widespread disruption to clinical trial accrual and operations. Studies conducted with potentially vulnerable populations, including cancer survivors, must shift towards virtual consent, data collection, and study visits to reduce risk for participants and study staff. Studies examining cancer care delivery innovations may also need to accommodate the increased use of virtual visits. Methods/design: This group-randomized, mixed methods study will recruit 600 cancer survivors from 12 National Cancer Institute Community Oncology Research Program (NCORP) practices. Survivors at intervention sites will use the AH-HA tool with their oncology provider; survivors at usual care sites will complete routine survivorship visits. Outcomes will be measured immediately after the study visit, with follow-up at 6 and 12 months. The study was amended during the COVID-19 pandemic to allow for virtual consent, data collection, and intervention options, with the goal of minimizing participant-staff in-person contact and accommodating virtual survivorship visits. Conclusions: Changes to the study protocol and procedures allow important cancer care delivery research to continue safely during the COVID-19 pandemic and give sites and survivors flexibility to conduct study activities in-person or remotely.

Original languageEnglish
Article number100808
JournalContemporary Clinical Trials Communications
StatePublished - Jun 2021


  • Breast cancer
  • Cancer survivors
  • Cardiovascular diseases
  • Clinical decision support
  • Electronic health records
  • Usability testing


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