Role of children in end-of-life treatment planning among Korean American older adults

J Soc Work End Life Palliat Care. 2010;6(3-4):164-84. doi: 10.1080/15524256.2010.529019.


Three focus groups (n = 23) with Korean American older adults explored the role of culture in end-of-life decision making. No participants had completed an advance directive and few had discussed end-of-life treatment preferences. Focus group themes addressed: (a) whether children are resistant or receptive to discussing their parents' end-of-life treatment preferences; (b) whether the older adults or their children should make decisions about end-of-life treatment; (c) whether decision making should be the responsibility of the eldest son or of all the children; and (d) whether children would implement the parent's preferences for end-of-life treatment. Understanding the role of children in end-of-life decision making among Korean American older adults is important for culturally competent care.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult Children / ethnology*
  • Advance Care Planning*
  • Aged
  • Asian / psychology*
  • Confucianism
  • Culture
  • Decision Making*
  • Female
  • Focus Groups
  • Health Status
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Republic of Korea / ethnology
  • Socioeconomic Factors
  • Terminal Care / psychology*