Using adult learning concepts to assist patients in completing advance directives

J Contin Educ Nurs. Jul-Aug 2000;31(4):174-8.


Background: Despite the fact that advance directives are legal documents that allow people to direct their future health care, few Americans have enacted them. Because lack of knowledge about what they are, and confusion regarding the process needed to complete one are the primary barriers for completion, patient education can be the key element in promoting the use of advance directives.

Conclusion: This article offers some teaching strategies nurses may use to address patients' ignorance and confusion and help patients understand that, although advance directives do not help people make end-of-life decisions, they serve as a mechanism by which a person's wishes may be carried out.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Advance Directives*
  • Attitude to Health
  • Health Knowledge, Attitudes, Practice
  • Humans
  • Learning*
  • Models, Educational*
  • Nursing Care / methods*
  • Nursing Care / psychology
  • Patient Education as Topic / methods*
  • Psychology, Educational
  • Teaching / methods*