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Journal Articles Palliative Medicine Year : 2011

Return home at the end of life: Patients' vulnerability and risk factors.

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Abstract

Although most of the people in good health questioned about the subject said they would like to die at home, in the western world between 60 and 80% of deaths occur in hospital. Most authors consider that the indispensable conditions for a return home are the patient's desire and presence of the family and caregivers with the appropriate skills. The assessment of other factors predictive of a return home is inadequate. The aim of this study is to clarify how the return home is influenced by the vulnerability of the patient at the end of life, and by that of the family and caregivers. We carried out a multicentric, observational, prospective, exhaustive and longitudinal epidemiological study (three months follow-up), including 146 patients hospitalized at the end of their life and desiring to return home. For these patients the caregivers respected their freedom to choose to die at home in over half the cases (56%). Their overall vulnerability (personal, family context and caregivers) had a significant influence on the return home. This overall vulnerability was in fact identified as applying in 40% of the clinical situations, and made the possibility of a return home 50% less likely.
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Dates and versions

inserm-00612231 , version 1 (28-07-2011)

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Pascale Vassal, Pierre Le Coz, Christian Hervé, Yves Matillon, François Chapuis. Return home at the end of life: Patients' vulnerability and risk factors.. Palliative Medicine, 2011, 25 (2), pp.139-47. ⟨10.1177/0269216310385876⟩. ⟨inserm-00612231⟩
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