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Factors associated with fulfilling the preference for dying at home among cancer patients: the role of general practitioners.

Ko, W., Miccinesi, G., Beccaro, M., Moreels, S., Donker, G.A., Onwuteaka-Philipsen, B., Alonso, T.V., Deliens, L., Block, L. van den. Factors associated with fulfilling the preference for dying at home among cancer patients: the role of general practitioners. Journal of Palliative Care: 2014, 30(3), 141-150
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Aim: This study aimed to explore clinical and care-related factors associated with fulfilling cancer patients’ preference for home death across four countries: Belgium (BE), the Netherlands (NL), Italy (IT), and Spain (ES). Methods: A mortality follow-back study was undertaken from 2009 to 2011 via representative networks of general practitioners (GPs). The study included all patients aged 18 and over who had died of cancer and whose home death preference and place of death were known by the GP. Factors associated with meeting home death preference were tested using multivariable logistic regressions. Results: Among 2,048 deceased patients, preferred and actual place of death was known in 42.6 percent of cases. Home death preference met ranged from 65.5 to 90.9 percent. Countryspecific factors included older age in BE, and decisionmaking capacity and being female in the NL. GPs’ provision of palliative care was positively associated with meeting home death preference. Odds ratios (ORs) were: BE: 9.9 (95 percent confidence interval [CI] 3.7-26.6); NL: 9.7 (2.4-39.9); and IT: 2.6 (1.2-5.5). ORs for Spain are not shown because a multivariate model was not performed. Conclusion: Those who develop policy to facilitate home death need to examine available resources for primary end-of-life care. (aut. ref.)
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