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Palliative care inpatients favour research participation irrespective of prognosis, performance or socioeconomic status: multicentre cohort study

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Felicity Dewhurst, Dr Donna Wakefield, Dr Jo Elverson, Dr Katie Frew


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© Author(s) (or their employer(s)) 2022. No commercial re-use. See rights and permissions. Published by BMJ.Objectives: Palliative care needs to embrace research to guide service development and effective symptom management. Healthcare professionals often feel research is too burdensome for patients who have poor performance status or are near the end of life. Many studies exclude these groups from participating. We aimed to identify whether specialist palliative care inpatients would wish to take part in research and whether preference varies according to study design, demographics, diagnosis, performance status and prognosis. Methods: 100 inpatients in two National Health Service specialist palliative care units and one independent hospice in the Northeast of England completed a short questionnaire about preferences for involvement in research. Results: 92% of participants stated they were interested in being involved in research. This was mostly unaffected by age, diagnosis, prognosis, performance and socioeconomic status. Three-quarters were within the last 3 months of life. Simple questions or interviews were the preferred methodology, whereas only half of patients would want further investigations or additional medications and fewer still wanted to participate in online activities, lifestyle change or group activities. Conclusions: Palliative care inpatients welcome the opportunity to be involved in research and should not be excluded on the grounds of advanced disease, poor prognosis and low performance status.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Dewhurst F, Wakefield D, Elverson J, Mcconnell R, Bryan C, Spriggs H, Atkinson K, Frew K

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: BMJ Supportive and Palliative Care

Year: 2022

Pages: epub ahead of print

Online publication date: 15/12/2022

Acceptance date: 29/11/2022

ISSN (print): 2045-435X

ISSN (electronic): 2045-4368

Publisher: BMJ Publishing Group


DOI: 10.1136/spcare-2022-004037

PubMed id: 36522142


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