Intensivists hold different views on their own thresholds for intensive care admission versus those they hold for patients.pearl
- Fumis Renata Rego Lins RRL Dept. of Critical Care Medicine, Hospital Sírio-Libanês, São Paulo, Brazil. Electronic address: firstname.lastname@example.org., Guilherme De Paula Pinto Schettino, Pedro Bribean Rogovschi, and Thiago Domingos Corrêa.
- Dept. of Critical Care Medicine, Hospital Sírio-Libanês, São Paulo, Brazil. Electronic address: email@example.com.
- J Crit Care. 2019 Oct 1; 53: 193-197.
BackgroundDiscussions about invasiveness of care (advanced directives) and end-of-life issues have become frequent among intensivists and patients. Nevertheless, there are considerable divergences in the attitudes between intensivists and patients toward end-of-life care in the intensive care units (ICU).MethodsThe goal was to compare the preferences between intensivists and general public regarding ICU admission of a hypothetical patient with six different clinical outcomes. For that, intensivists and the general public (university graduate professionals outside the area of health) were invited to participate in this study. A survey was conducted with a hypothetical patient with six different clinical outcomes ranging from ICU discharge without any neurological sequelae, nor dependence for daily activities, to death. The WHOQOL-BREF was applied. Comparisons were made between the answers provided by intensivists regarding what they would choose for themselves and their patients, and the preferences of general public.ResultsBetween July 2013 and July 2016, 300 participants in 5 hospitals in São Paulo, Brazil were invited to participate in this study, of whom 257 (85.7%) responded the survey. Eighty-two intensivists responded what they would choose for themselves, 81 intensivists responded what they would choose for their patients, and 94 people from general public responded what they would choose for themselves. Quality of life did not differ among the groups. In all scenarios, except when the outcome was severe disability or death, intensivists were more likely to choose ICU admission for their patients than for themselves (p < .05 for all). Compared with general public, intensivists were more likely to choose ICU admission for themselves only when the best clinical scenario outcome is considered (p < .001). General public was significantly less prone to choosing ICU admission than intensivists when choosing for their patients, in three out of six scenarios (p < .001 for all).ConclusionsConsiderable divergences exist between intensivists' and patients' preferences toward end-of-life care. Advanced care planning and effective ongoing communication among intensivists, patients and relatives are essential to improve end-of-life decisions and the quality of care.Copyright © 2019. Published by Elsevier Inc.
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