Impact of a Formal Advance Care Planning Program on End-of-Life Care for Patients With Heart Failure: Results From a Randomized Controlled Trial.

Journal Article (Journal Article)


There is no evidence on effectiveness of advance care planning (ACP) among patients with heart failure (HF). We examined the effect of an ACP program in facilitating end of life (EOL) care consistent with the preferences of patients with HF (primary aim), and on their decisional conflict, discussion with surrogates, illness understanding, anxiety, depression, and quality of life (secondary aims).


We randomized 282 patients with HF to receive ACP (n=93) or usual care (control arm, n=189). Primary outcomes were assessed among deceased (n=89) and secondary outcomes from baseline and 6 follow-ups conducted every 4 months.


Deceased patients in the ACP arm were no more likely than those in control arm to have wishes followed for EOL treatments (ACP: 35%, Control: 44%; P= .47), or place of death (ACP: 52%, Control: 51%; P = .1.00). A higher proportion in the ACP arm had wishes followed for cardiopulmonary resuscitation (ACP: 83%, Control: 62%; P = .12). At first follow-up, patients with ACP had lower decisional conflict (β = -10.8, P< .01) and were more likely to discuss preferences with surrogates (β = 1.3, P = .04). ACP did not influence other outcomes.


This trial did not confirm that our ACP program was effective in facilitating EOL care consistent with patient preferences. The program led to short-term improvements in the decision-making.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Malhotra, C; Sim, D; Jaufeerally, FR; Hu, M; Nadkarni, N; Ng, CSH; Wong, G; Tan, BC; Lim, JF; Chuang, CY-T; Finkelstein, EA

Published Date

  • July 2020

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 26 / 7

Start / End Page

  • 594 - 598

PubMed ID

  • 31991216

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1532-8414

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 1071-9164

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1016/j.cardfail.2020.01.015


  • eng