Objective The aim of this study was to describe preferences for a good death among Chinese patients with advanced cancer and then to explore factors contributing to their preferences including patient demographics and disease variables.
Methods A convenience sample of 275 patients with advanced cancer was recruited from a tertiary cancer hospital in Beijing, China, between February and December 2017. A Chinese version of the Good Death Inventory (GDI) was used to measure patients’ preferences for dying and death. Besides, data were collected using a multi-itemed questionnaire focusing on demographic and disease characteristics of patients.
Results Of the 275 questionnaires returned, 248 responses were analysed (effective response rate 90.2%). According to the total scores for each of the 20 domains, the five most important domains of a good death were: good relationship with family (19.80±2.39), independence (19.66±2.56), maintaining hope and pleasure (19.56±2.55), good relationship with medical staff (18.92±3.73), not being a burden to others (18.89±3.30). Patients’ characteristics including age, educational status, religious belief, medical payment types, family economic status, past experiences of the death of others, the period since cancer diagnosis, past experiences of hospitalisation and subjective physical condition influenced their preferences for a good death (all p<0.05).
Conclusions We had an in-depth knowledge and understanding of their preferences for good death among Chinese patients with advanced cancer. Meanwhile, we found some patients’ factors contributed to different preferences for a good death. These findings have the potential to guide hospice care services aimed at achieving a good death for patients with advanced cancer.
- advanced cancer
- good death
- hospice care
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Contributors YHL, XTH and HY contributed to the study design, data acquisition, data analysis, data interpretation, manuscript drafting and revisions. RXG, YW, LHW and YRZ were involved in the data acquisition, data interpretation and article revisions. HYS contributed to data analysis, data interpretation and article revisions.
Funding This work was supported by the Nursing Research Fund of Peking University Health Science Center [grant number BMU20160516].
Disclaimer The funders had no inﬂuence in study design; in the collection, analysis and interpretation of data; in the writing of the report and in the decision to submit the article for publication.
Competing interests Competing interests: None declared.
Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.