Nursing home participation in end-of-life programs: United States, 2004

Helaine E. Resnick, Gregory L. Foster, Susan E. Hickman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

7 Scopus citations


The purpose of this report is to define the extent to which US nursing homes (NH) participate in end-of-life programs, using a nationally representative, cross-sectional sample of US NH. Data on EoL programs including Five Wishes, Last Acts, and Physician Orders for Life-Sustaining Treatment (POLST) were collected. In 2004, 17.2% of NH reported participating in 1 or more of these programs, with the largest proportion participating in POLST (13.3%) and smaller proportions in Five Wishes (5.6%) and Last Acts (4.2%). Nursing homes were more likely to participate in EoL programs if they also offered specialty programs and staff training for hospice, end-of-life, pain management, and dementia services. In 2004, fewer than 1 in 5 US NH participated in an EoL program. However, facilities that had EoL programs were more likely to have programs and staff training for services related to EoL care, a finding that suggests a clustering of these programs, services, and training. Provision of appropriate staff training may be a key to expanding EoL program participation in skilled nursing.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)354-360
Number of pages7
JournalAmerican Journal of Hospice and Palliative Medicine
Issue number5
StatePublished - Oct 1 2009
Externally publishedYes


  • Advance directive
  • End-of-life care
  • Epidemiology
  • Nursing home
  • Survey

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)

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