Attitudes on end-of-life care and advance care planning in the lesbian and gay community

G. L. Stein, Karen A. Bonuck

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

39 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Gay men and lesbians have special interests in documenting their preferences regarding advance care planning and end-of-life care. A 64-item survey instrument was developed to ascertain the preferences of this community regarding approaches to end-of-life care, viewpoints on physician-assisted suicide (PAS) and euthanasia, and practices regarding advance care planning. The survey was completed by 575 participants recruited through community-based health care and social service organizations serving the lesbian and gay community, primarily in the New York metropolitan area. Respondents represent a diverse group of women (36%) and men (63%) from various age, racial/ethnic, and religious/spiritual backgrounds; 10% were human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)-positive. Respondents' perspectives on end-of-life care are generally consistent with findings from other attitudinal studies of U.S. adults: a majority supported legalization of PAS and preferred a palliative approach to end-of-life care. However, the gay community sample revealed even stronger support for assisted suicide and palliative care. Although respondents completed advance directives at a higher rate than adults generally, the legal importance for gay men and lesbians to execute directives should encourage health care providers and community organizations to assume a larger educational role on advance care planning. Results confirm other reports on the need to address provider communication skills. It is speculated that the HIV epidemic was a major influence behind these results because of the overwhelming personal impact of the epidemic on most gay men and lesbians during the past two decades.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)173-190
Number of pages18
JournalJournal of Palliative Medicine
Volume4
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - 2001

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Advance Care Planning
Terminal Care
Assisted Suicide
HIV
Organizations
Advance Directives
Sexual Minorities
Community Health Services
Euthanasia
Social Work
Palliative Care
Health Personnel
Health Services
Communication
Surveys and Questionnaires

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)

Cite this

Attitudes on end-of-life care and advance care planning in the lesbian and gay community. / Stein, G. L.; Bonuck, Karen A.

In: Journal of Palliative Medicine, Vol. 4, No. 2, 2001, p. 173-190.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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