Cuidados al Paciente y su Familia al Final de la Vida: La Anticipación Compasiva

Translated title of the contribution: Care for the Patient and his Family at the end of Life: Compassionate Advance Care Planning

Encarnación Pérez Bret, Rogelio Altisent Trota, Javier Rocafort Gil, Paula Jaman Mewes

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


End of life is frequently accompanied by suffering and hardships that can be alleviated in the Palliative Care (PC) units by applying compassionate advance care. It is the aim of this paper to describe the concept of "compassionate advance care" as a way of caring for the patient and his family at the end of life from the perspective of both professionals, teachers and students of the health sciences, and persons with advanced disease and their families. A qualitative methodology was used. Data were collected through in-depth interviews and focus groups, and analysed and coded using the theory of Grounded Theory. Approval of an Ethics Committee was obtained. The intentional sample consisted of 29 participants, who were patients and relatives of patients with advanced disease, PC professionals and experts in bioethics, university professors and Health Sciences students. Data were collected in a PC Hospital in Madrid, Spain. The participants positively valued the compassionate advance care provided by professionals: analysing and reflecting on possible complications that may arise from the advanced disease situation suffered by the patient and establishing a dialogue with him about possible actions in this regard. The paper concludes that compassion is a virtue that implies anticipating the needs of patients, thus allowing the patient to make the right shared decisions. This is what the term Compassionate Advance Care Planning entails. Further studies are needed to delve into the characteristics of compassionate Advance Care Planning and how to optimally implement it in patients at the end of life. To admit the opposite is to enter a spiral where the dignity of the human being would become an object of weighting with respect to another value, which, in a hypothetical conflict could be postponed by another. However, Palliative Care takes into account the social dimension of the end of life of the human being. They take care of the sick human being in its entirety. That is why they are the option most in line with the dignity of the human being at the end of his life.

Translated title of the contributionCare for the Patient and his Family at the end of Life: Compassionate Advance Care Planning
Original languageSpanish
Pages (from-to)35-42
Number of pages8
JournalCuadernos de bioética : revista oficial de la Asociación Española de Bioética y Ética Médica
Issue number98
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2019


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