Asian Nurs Res.  2010 Dec;4(4):185-193.

Perspectives of Korean Patients, Families, Physicians and Nurses on Advance Directives

  • 1College of Nursing Science, Kyung Hee University, Seoul, Korea.
  • 2St. Paul Hospital, Seoul, Korea.


The purpose
of this study was to explore the perspectives of lung cancer patients, their families, physicians and nurses on advance directives.
The study employed a comparative descriptive design. A total of 124 participants from six general hospitals in Seoul and metropolitan area participated in this study from January 1, 2009 to November 15, 2009. Face-to-face interviews were conducted using a structured questionnaire.
The majority of participants were not aware of advance directives. Most participants desired the establishment of a reliable legal system and a specific legal protocol for the design and application of advance directives. The perspectives of patients, their families, physicians and nurses differed regarding end-of-life care decisions. The least preferred treatment by patients with lung cancer was intensive care, followed by cardiopulmonary resuscitation, tracheotomy and artificial ventilation, and radiotherapy.
There were many differences in the perspectives of patients, families, physicians and nurses on advance directives. End-of-life care decisions should take the wishes of patients into account, and that such decisions should therefore be made before the patients lose the capacity to make them. To make well-informed decisions regarding future care, patients and families must be fully educated about advance directives and expected outcomes.


advance directives; oncology
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