Objective: This study compared the quality of end-of-life care between veterans with and without schizophrenia who died of cancer in the northwestern United States. Methods: In this cross-sectional study, medical records of 60 veterans with schizophrenia and 196 with no major mental illness who died of cancer were compared on hospice enrollment, palliative and life-sustaining interventions, advance directives, and site of death. Results: Among veterans with schizophrenia, 58% had an advance directive, 73% received an opiate before hospice enrollment, 63% had a physician order to forgo cardiopulmonary resuscitation, 55% were hospice enrolled, and 27% died in the hospital. Schizophrenia patients had longer hospice stays (107±144 versus 63±96 days, p=.05) and more physician orders for life-sustaining treatment (15% versus 5%, p=.006) compared with veterans without mental illness. Conclusions: On most measures, veterans with schizophrenia who died of cancer received comparable or better endof-life care than veterans without mental illness.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Psychiatry and Mental health