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Knowledge, attitudes, and preferences of healthy young adults regarding advance care planning: A focus group study of university students in Pittsburgh, USA Health behavior, health promotion and society

Kavalieratos, D and Ernecoff, NC and Keim-Malpass, J and Degenholtz, HB (2015) Knowledge, attitudes, and preferences of healthy young adults regarding advance care planning: A focus group study of university students in Pittsburgh, USA Health behavior, health promotion and society. BMC Public Health, 15 (1).

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Abstract

© 2015 Kavalieratos et al.; licensee BioMed Central. Background: To date, research and promotion regarding advance care planning (ACP) has targeted those with serious illness or the elderly, thereby ignoring healthy young adults. The purpose of this study was to explore young adults' knowledge, attitudes, and preferences regarding advance care planning (ACP) and medical decision-making. Further, we aimed to understand the potential role of public health to encourage population-based promotion of ACP. Methods: Between February 2007 and April 2007, we conducted six focus groups comprising 56 young adults ages 18-30. Topics explored included (1) baseline knowledge regarding ACP, (2) preferences for ACP, (3) characteristics of preferred surrogates, and (4) barriers and facilitators to completing ACP specific to age and individuation. We used a qualitative thematic approach to analyze transcripts. Results: All participants desired more information regarding ACP. In addition, participants expressed (1) heterogeneous attitudes regarding triggers to perform ACP, (2) the opinion that ACP is a marker of individuation, (3) the belief that prior exposure to illness plays a role in prompting ACP, and (4) an appreciation that ACP is flexible to changes in preferences and circumstances throughout the life-course. Conclusion: Young adults perceive ACP as a worthwhile health behavior and view a lack of information as a major barrier to discussion and adoption. Our data emphasize the need for strategies to increase ACP knowledge, while encouraging population-level, patient-centered, healthcare decision-making.


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Details

Item Type: Article
Status: Published
Creators/Authors:
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Kavalieratos, DDIOK@pitt.eduDIOK
Ernecoff, NC
Keim-Malpass, J
Degenholtz, HBhoward.degenholtz@pitt.eduDEGEN
Date: 1 January 2015
Date Type: Publication
Journal or Publication Title: BMC Public Health
Volume: 15
Number: 1
DOI or Unique Handle: 10.1186/s12889-015-1575-y
Schools and Programs: Graduate School of Public Health > Behavioral and Community Health Sciences
Graduate School of Public Health > Health Policy & Management
School of Medicine > Medicine
Refereed: Yes
Date Deposited: 31 Aug 2016 16:03
Last Modified: 02 Feb 2019 15:55
URI: http://d-scholarship.pitt.edu/id/eprint/29396

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