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Title: Advance directives and life-sustaining treatment : attitudes of Hong Kong Chinese elders with chronic disease
Authors: Ting, FH
Mok, E 
Keywords: Advance directives
Chronic disease
Decision making
Life support care
Issue Date: 2011
Publisher: Hong Kong Academy of Medicine and Hong Kong Medical Association
Source: Hong Kong medical journal (香港醫學雜誌), 2011, v. 17, no. 2, p. 105-111 How to cite?
Journal: Hong Kong medical journal (香港醫學雜誌) 
Abstract: Objective To examine the attitudes of Hong Kong Chinese elders with chronic disease with regard to advance directives and lifesustaining treatment. Design Cross-sectional questionnaire survey. Setting Medical unit of a regional teaching hospital in Hong Kong. Participants In-patients aged 60 years or above with chronic disease. Main outcome measures Demographic profiles and attitudes towards advance directives and life-sustaining treatment. Results A total of 219 elderly patients completed the questionnaire. Their mean age was 73 (standard deviation, 8) years; 133 (61%) were female. The majority had neither heard about advance directives (81%), nor discussed the issue with others (73%) before participating in this study. After they were informed of the concept of advance directives, about half (49%) said they would consider using it if it is legislated in Hong Kong. The respondents generally supported the withholding or withdrawing of life-sustaining treatment in medically futile situations. In all, 55% of them believed that the patient alone should make the decision on withholding or withdrawing life-sustaining treatment, if competent to do so. If the patient became not competent, 44% believed that the individual's family alone should make such a decision. Conclusion The fact that most of the respondents had never heard about advance directives or discussed the concept with others points to a lack of knowledge and to the necessity to step up public education about such issues.
ISSN: 1024-2708
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