Development of EPAT: An assessment tool for pediatric hematology/oncology training programs

Moreira D. C., Metzger M. L., Antillón-Klussmann F., González-Ramella O., Gao Y., Bazzeh F., ...More

Cancer, vol.129, no.21, pp.3448-3456, 2023 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 129 Issue: 21
  • Publication Date: 2023
  • Doi Number: 10.1002/cncr.34946
  • Journal Name: Cancer
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus, Academic Search Premier, PASCAL, Abstracts in Social Gerontology, BIOSIS, CAB Abstracts, CINAHL, EMBASE, MEDLINE, Public Affairs Index, Veterinary Science Database
  • Page Numbers: pp.3448-3456
  • Keywords: cancer workforce, capacity building, education, pediatric oncology, training
  • Hacettepe University Affiliated: Yes


Purpose: In the absence of a standardized tool to assess the quality of pediatric hematology/oncology training programs, the Education Program Assessment Tool (EPAT) was conceptualized as a user-friendly and adaptable tool to evaluate and identify areas of opportunity, pinpoint needed modifications, and monitor progress for training programs around the world. Methods: The development of EPAT consisted of three main phases: operationalization, consensus, and piloting. After each phase, the tool was iteratively modified based on feedback to improve its relevance, usability, and clarity. Results: The operationalization process led to the development of 10 domains with associated assessment questions. The two-step consensus phase included an internal consensus phase to validate the domains and a subsequent external consensus phase to refine the domains and overall function of the tool. EPAT domains for programmatic evaluation are hospital infrastructure, patient care, education infrastructure, program basics, clinical exposure, theory, research, evaluation, educational culture, and graduate impact. EPAT was piloted in five training programs in five countries, representing diverse medical training and patient care contexts for proper validation of the tool. Face validity was confirmed by a correlation between the perceived and calculated scores for each domain (r = 0.78, p <.0001). Conclusions: EPAT was developed following a systematic approach, ultimately leading to a relevant tool to evaluate the different core elements of pediatric hematology/oncology training programs across the world. With EPAT, programs will have a tool to quantitatively evaluate their training, allowing for benchmarking with centers at the local, regional, and international level.