Conflict resolution in end of life treatment decisions (This literature review informed the Conflict Resolution in End of Life Setting Project in 2009)
While there are many documents and published articles around end-of-life (EOL) care, including withdrawing and witholding treatment, there are very few that directly refer to how to manage conflict and even fewer that have scientifically tested or compare different approaches. This is not surprising, as the management of conflict does not readily lend itself to scientific and rigorous testing using conventional research methodolgies. Conflict around EOL issues can occur between clinicians, between patients and their relatives, or between relatives and clinicians, especially where the patient is incompetent, and where they disagree about the most appropriate plan.
This literature review explores some of the ways to prevent EOL conflict starting with community awareness and advance care planning for EOL, to improved clinical communication strategies, earlier palliative care intervention, better identification of the dying patient, ethics consultations, mediation and other potential legal solutions. NSW Health commissioned this review by the Simpson Centre for Health Services Research, UNSW through the Sax Institute in 2008.
File link: Conflict resolution in end of life treatment decisions (This literature review informed the Conflict Resolution in End of Life Setting Project in 2009)