Caregiver bereavement outcome: relationship with hospice at home, satisfaction with care, and home death

J Palliat Care. Summer 2004;20(2):69-77.

Abstract

This study used a randomized controlled trial design to investigate the impact of hospice at home (HAH) on caregiver bereavement outcome. Secondary analyses considered the association between bereavement, place of death, and carers' assessment of support. Ninety-six informal carers of patients referred to HAH were surveyed six weeks post-bereavement about the quality of terminal care. Carers next completed measures of their own bereavement response and general health six months post-bereavement. There was no evidence that HAH had an impact on bereavement outcome. In contrast, perceptions of inadequate terminal support and high symptom severity were associated with worse carer bereavement response. However, it remains unclear whether carers' retrospective ratings constitute an accurate account of symptoms and care. Home deaths were associated with both better bereavement response and better physical health post-bereavement than were inpatient deaths. Further research is needed to investigate the implications of death at home for the carer.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Bereavement*
  • Caregivers / psychology*
  • Consumer Behavior*
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Home Care Services, Hospital-Based*
  • Hospice Care*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Statistics, Nonparametric
  • United Kingdom