There is no means to evaluate the death experience in the US healthcare system. Other countries have established population-wide measures to evaluate and improve the dying experience for patients and their families. With an increasing population of advanced-age persons, changes in sites of death, and a continually fractured healthcare delivery system, there is a need to establish a universal assessment of the quality of death in the US. In this commentary, we outline the need for such an assessment and build off of previous literature on the various existing assessments of the quality of death that have typically been reserved for end-of-life care specialties. Based on the aforementioned reasons and poor performance relative to other nations, there is a need for political attention to assessing the quality of American death experiences for patients and for their families. Absent such a measure, there will never be an incentive to improve the quality of death for patients and their families and the US healthcare system will continue to neglect this important aspect of American life.
This article is associated with the Policy & Measurement lens of The Beryl Institute Experience Framework (https://theberylinstitute.org/experience-framework/).
Xu M, Silvera GA, Walton L, Banaszak-Holl J. Transforming the American experience of death: What dreams may come?. Patient Experience Journal. 2023; 10(3):15-20. doi: 10.35680/2372-0247.1848.
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