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New Study Linking End-of-Life Directives With Hospitalization Has Implications for California

A study released this month found that nursing home patients who participate in a program that lets them record their end-of-life treatment wishes are much more likely to get those wishes met.

The Physician Orders for Life-Sustaining Treatment program, or POLST, allows patients to specify the type of end-of-life care they want. The study found that patients with a POLST were 59% less likely to get unwanted hospitalizations and medical interventions.

In a California Healthline Special Report by Mina Kim, researchers and geriatric experts discuss the study and its implications for California.

The Special Report includes comments from:

  • Kenneth Brummel-Smith, chair of the Department of Geriatrics at Florida State University College of Medicine;
  • Judy Citko, executive director of the Coalition for Compassionate Care of California; and
  • Jeffrey Yee, chief of general medicine at Woodland Healthcare (Kim, California Healthline, 7/16).

The complete transcript of this Special Report is available as a PDF.

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