Screen Readers Skip to Content

End-of-life Discussions Do Not Affect Survival Rate

Published: 2011-09-29 - Updated: 2018-01-26
Author: Wiley-Blackwell

Synopsis: Study shows patients who talk with their physicians about end-of-life care have similar survival rates as patients who do not have these discussions.

Main Digest

Discussing and documenting patients' preferences for care at the end of life does not cause them any harm, contrary to recent claims.


In Other News:


A new study published today in the Journal of Hospital Medicine found that patients who talk with their physicians about end-of-life care and have an advance directive in their medical record have similar survival rates as patients who do not have these discussions and documents.

The study included 356 patients admitted at three different hospitals who had low or medium risks of dying within one year. Patients were followed from 2003 to 2009.

During the study, there were no differences in survival for patients who had an end-of-life discussion and those who had not; there also were no survival differences for those who had a living will in their medical record and those who did not.

"Our findings are reassuring. They support health care providers, who can initiate these discussions, and policy makers, who seek to reimburse these time consuming discussions," said lead researcher Stacy M. Fischer, MD of the University of Colorado School of Medicine.

"Most importantly, our findings are reassuring for patients and families who desire these discussions with their health care providers."

"The term 'death panels' has sparked considerable controversy recently. It has undermined the efforts of clinicians who provide end-of-life care by scaring patients into thinking that their lives may be cut short for their families' or society's best interest," added Fischer.

"We hope our study provides data to help inform the national debate about advance directives for key stakeholders; health care providers, policy makers, and patients and families."

You're reading Disabled World. See our homepage for informative disability news, reviews, sports, stories and how-tos. You can also connect with us on social media such as Twitter and Facebook or learn more about Disabled World on our about us page.

Disclaimer: Disabled World provides general information only. Materials presented are in no way meant to be a substitute for professional medical care by a qualified practitioner, nor should they be construed as such. Any 3rd party offering or advertising on disabled-world.com does not constitute endorsement by Disabled World. View our Advertising Policy for further information. Please report outdated or inaccurate information to us.

Cite Page: Journal: Disabled World. Language: English (U.S.). Author: Wiley-Blackwell. Electronic Publication Date: 2011-09-29 - Revised: 2018-01-26. Title: End-of-life Discussions Do Not Affect Survival Rate, Source: <a href=https://www.disabled-world.com/medical/palliative/discussions.php>End-of-life Discussions Do Not Affect Survival Rate</a>. Retrieved 2021-08-02, from https://www.disabled-world.com/medical/palliative/discussions.php - Reference: DW#473-8499.