Tools and strategies for eliciting patient preferences for end-of-life care are often absent, of poor quality, or ignored. The American Medical Association's Council on Ethical and Judicial Affairs has proposed new guidelines for the "optimal use" of advance directives. The guidelines urge the use of detailed work sheets in "tailoring end-of-life care to patients' preferences" and suggest a process to be followed by physicians in educating patients about death and dying. However, these well-intentioned guidelines face 3 key obstacles: the negative consequences of "ritualizing" end-of-life planning, physicians' inclination to disdain and to delegate to others communication about end-of-life preferences, and the tardiness of medical pedagogy in emphasizing end-of-life care and communication as crucial for the success of future physicians.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Social Psychology
- Sociology and Political Science