Arizona Community Health Center Providers Practices, Knowledge and Attitudes Related to Advance Care Planning
Community Health Centers
Primary Care Providers
Advance Care Planning
AdvisorReel, Sally J.
MetadataShow full item record
PublisherThe University of Arizona.
RightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
AbstractBackground: Numerous studies demonstrate benefits of using advance care planning (ACP) in the general practice setting. Despite this, providers do not regularly initiate ACP and only one third of Americans have completed an advance directive (AD). This number is even lower among ethnic and minority groups. Community health center (CHC) providers have the opportunity to improve the quality of end-of-life (EOL) care and reduce healthcare disparities affecting medically underserved populations, yet no research has been conducted to identify CHC providers' practices, knowledge and attitudes towards ACP. Addressing this query may assist researchers in identifying optimal strategies for improving ACP delivery in this setting, ultimately leading to improved quality of EOL care for the populations served. Purpose: The study purpose was to assess Arizona CHC providers' practices, knowledge and attitudes towards ACP. Setting: The study setting was federally qualified community health centers located in urban and rural sites throughout Arizona. Participants: Study participants (N = 38) were predominantly middle-aged females practicing for an average of 13 years. 60% of providers were Master's or Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) prepared providers while 40% were Doctor of Medicine (MD) or Doctor of Osteopathy (MD). Methods: This study used a descriptive correlational quantitative research design. The "EOL Decision Making Survey" instrument was adapted into an electronic survey and distributed to 514 physician and non-physician CHC providers. Data analysis was performed using PASS and SPSS statistical software. Results: This sample of Arizona CHC providers was reasonably knowledgeable about Arizona state law and clinical application of ACP. Physician providers had greater knowledge and greater confidence in their answers related to Arizona state law compared to non-physician providers. Participants were largely comfortable with counseling patients in ACP and exhibited mostly positive attitudes toward ACP. Older respondents with greater years' experience tended to have greater knowledge of the clinical application of ACP as well as greater positive attitudes towards ACP. Providers with greater years' experience tended to have greater comfort in counseling patients in ACP. Despite these positive findings, routine initiation of ACP in this setting was low (44%). Conclusions: Though Arizona CHC providers have reasonable knowledge related to ACP, are comfortable with counseling patients in ACP and have positive attitudes towards ACP, less than half routinely initiate ACP conversations with their patients. Though more research is needed to validate these findings, targeted educational interventions and process changes may help improve ACP delivery rates in this setting.
Degree ProgramGraduate College