The 64 per cent of the population do not know the possibility of making a living will

21 06 2012

The 64 per cent of the population do not know the possibility of making a living will. And is that, Although the 84,5 per cent considered it useful and only to the 10 per cent think and speak of death bothers you, only a 6 per cent receive this information by medical personnel, a 22,3 per cent through the media and a 7,5 per cent by friends and family, According to a study carried out in Catalonia and presented at the thirty-second Congress of the Spanish society medicine of family and community being held these days in Bilbao.

The 64 per cent of the population do not know the possibility of making a living will. And is that, Although the 84,5 per cent considered it useful and only to the 10 per cent think and speak of death bothers you, only a 6 per cent receive this information by medical personnel, a 22,3 per cent through the media and a 7,5 per cent by friends and family.

These data correspond to a study carried out in Catalonia, you have participated 264 people with an average age of 53 years and that have passed through the Centre of health since November of the 2011 until January of the 2012. In addition, they were presented at the thirty-second Congress of the Spanish society medicine of family and community (semFYC), being held these days in Bilbao.

As discussed by the authors of this experience, Irene Alcalá and Olga Bigas, the living will is still unknown by the majority of the population, Despite being a law based on the principle of autonomy. In his view, There is a “lack of information” adequately addressed to citizens.

In this sense, the President of the Organizing Committee of the Congress, Susana Martín, Remember that although the great legislative development occurs from the year 2000 the Basic Law of autonomy of the patient and the rights and obligations of clinical documentation and information, currently “they are few” studies on knowledge and attitudes of health workers about this.

“The dissemination of this information in the media play a fundamental role, as seen in this work. In general, physicians have a positive attitude towards the use and usefulness of this document and the posture of the patient is also favorable. However, This positive feeling contrasts with data that less than a 25 percent of adults completed the document. We can say that there is a predisposition to complete your advance, but not in the near future”, emphasizes Martin.

Also, the study reflects that they few health workers who start conversations with citizens on the advance planning for end of life care. In this sense, said Martin, physicians know “little” the standards, the content and the registration of this document. For this reason, He advocates seek alternatives to primary care consultations so that patients can report, through the nursing staff, social or auxiliary workers.

Experts are aware that the living will is only effective when there is a close relationship between the doctor and the patient. In this sense, the President of the Organizing Committee recognizes that most of the people it costs them talk about death, especially when it is your own, but regrets the lack of time that there are consultations hinders also arises the issue because “There is the fear of disturbing the patient”.

In this sense, the study reflects that most of the people considered that they should receive this information after an interview in which is explained –with the help of a triptych– the fundamentals and the tools to access the living will.

In addition, in the second part of the work on health workforce, highlights that the 34 per cent has been consulted once on this aspect and that is difficult to find own ignorance and lack of time. “Find it us interesting that although only the 10 percent of the surveyed patients discomfort it refers to talk about, the 46 per cent of health personnel it believed that for them it is. I.e., the patient does not ask for not knowing of its existence, and the workforce does not it ignorance and false beliefs about patients”, comment the authors.

The truth is that, as it gets evident this experience, There is an ignorance widespread on this issue as a 75,5 percent of patients ignore if you have legal validity; a 70,2 per cent do not know some of the aspects that aspects includes and more than the 80 percent unknown no are necessary witnesses, notary and legal representative.

In addition, a 83.4 per cent considered that all persons should receive information. “Currently we continue feeling more comfortable communicating such decisions verbally to the family, instead of writing. There is still a certain preference in the decisions in the hands of family and medical leave”, argues Martin.

Finally, the study reflects that knowledge and predisposition to consider the realization of the living will or recommend it is higher in people with secondary or higher education. “Our opinion on these differences is that it could be due to that persons with studies, in general, they have more tools when looking for information or keep up to date”, point out the authors.

By latest, These researchers recognize that he has surprised them the fact that age does not affect too as well as having suffered a serious illness or that of a family member, that could show greater sensitivity or knowledge on these topics. However, They recognize that the latter has failed to demonstrate it at work.

Medicosypacientes.com [en línea] Bilbao (ESP): medicosypacientes.com, 21 de junio de 2012 [REF. 14 in June of 2012] Available on Internet: http://www.medicosypacientes.com/sociedades/2012/06/12_06_14_semfyc