Patient Engagement in Advance Care Planning in Primary Care
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Advance care planning is a process that allows individuals to define their preferences and goals for future medical care through a series of behaviors and actions. Early advance care planning allows patients time to process their feelings about future end-of-life care, decreases healthcare spending, and reduces caregiver, patient, and provider distress. This quasi-experimental, evidence-based quality improvement project aimed to increase patient engagement in advance care planning behaviors in the primary care setting over five months. Patients 50 years of age and older who are English-speaking and have two or more chronic conditions were provided access to PREPARE educational materials and completed the four-item Advance Care Planning Engagement Survey. Twenty-seven participants completed the survey at a federally qualified healthcare center in the Midwest. The primary outcome measured was patient engagement in advance care planning by gender and age. The project found that patients 50 years of age and older are contemplating engaging in advance care planning behaviors. Primary care clinics are the ideal setting to provide patients with educational materials to aid in increasing engagement in advance care planning.
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