Improving a Full Range of Advance Care Planning Behavior Change and Action Domains: The PREPARE Randomized Trial.J Pain Symptom Manage. 2018 10; 56(4):575-581.e7.JP
Advance care planning (ACP) engagement includes a wide range of behaviors and actions related to discussions and documentation, yet few ACP intervention studies measure the full process.
The objective of the study was to compare the effects of an easy-to-read advance directive (AD) versus an ACP web site plus the AD (PREPARE + AD) on Behavior Change Processes and Actions, including discussions and documentation.
Secondary data were from a completed ACP trial. Participants were primary care patients, ≥60 years old, with two comorbidities. We used the validated ACP Engagement Survey to examine six-month change in subscales measuring Behavior Change Processes (knowledge, contemplation, self-efficacy, readiness) and Actions (decision makers, quality of life, flexibility for decision makers, asking clinicians questions), specifically related to discussions and documentation. We used adjusted mixed-effects linear models to compare mean change and engagement over time.
Compared to the AD-only, PREPARE + AD resulted in greater increases in all Behavior Change Processes subscales and Actions related to decision makers, quality of life, and flexibility (all P-values ≤0.005). Both interventions significantly increased the proportion of participants who engaged in ACP discussions (PREPARE + AD, 99.5%; AD-only, 93.3%) and documentation (PREPARE + AD, 99.5%; AD-only, 90.4%), with greater increases for PREPARE + AD (all P-values <0.001).
Both PREPARE plus an easy-to-read AD and an AD-only markedly increased ACP engagement in a full range of ACP behaviors, including discussions and documentation, and engagement was nearly 100% with PREPARE + AD. Future ACP studies should examine a full range of ACP behaviors beyond ADs and the impact of PREPARE and easy-to-read AD implementation on health care systems.