Views on a "Good Death": End-of-Life Preferences and Their Association With Socio-Demographic Characteristics in a Representative Sample of Older Adults in Switzerland

Omega (Westport). 2020 Jul 29;30222820945071. doi: 10.1177/0030222820945071. Online ahead of print.

Abstract

The current study explores the end-of-life (EOL) preferences of a national representative sample of adults aged 55 and older in Switzerland and shows how these preferences vary by respondents' sociodemographic characteristics and the linguistic region in which they live. Many of the presented EOL attributes are considered as (very) important by a large majority of the older population in Switzerland with significant variations across sociodemographic groups. Specifically, gender is related to psychosocial aspects of EOL, age to the importance attached to avoiding being a burden on the society, and education levels to preferences regarding overtreatment and advance care planning. The results highlight the importance of a personalized, holistic and interdisciplinary approach to EOL and EOL care, since social, psychological, organizational and physical aspects of EOL are rated as (very) important with significant differences in EOL preferences across sociodemographic groups.

Keywords: attitude; general public; population; survey.