Race and ethnicity have been shown to affect quality of cancer care, and patients with low English proficiency (LEP) have increased risk for serious adverse events. We sought to assess the impact of primary language on health care engagement as indicated by clinical trial screening and engagement, use of genetic counseling, and communication via an electronic patient portal.Clinical and demographic data on patients with breast cancer diagnosed and treated from 2013 to 2018 within the Stanford University Health Care system were compiled via linkage of electronic health records, an internal clinical trial database, and the California Cancer Registry. Logistic and linear regression models were used to evaluate for association of clinical trial engagement and patient portal message rates with primary language group.Patients with LEP had significantly lower rates of clinical trial engagement compared with their English-speaking counterparts (adjusted odds ratio [OR], 0.29; 95% CI, 0.16 to 0.51). Use of genetic counseling was similar between language groups. Rates of patient portal messaging did not differ between English-speaking and LEP groups on multivariable analysis; however, patients with LEP were less likely to have a portal account (adjusted OR, 0.89; 95% CI, 0.83 to 0.96). Among LEP subgroups, Spanish speakers were significantly less likely to engage with the patient portal compared with English speakers (estimated difference in monthly rate: OR, 0.43; 95% CI, 0.24 to 0.77).We found that patients with LEP had lower rates of clinical trial engagement and odds of electronic patient portal enrollment. Interventions designed to overcome language and cultural barriers are essential to optimize the experience of patients with LEP.
View details for DOI 10.1200/OP.20.01093
View details for PubMedID 33844591