End-of-life care for veterans with schizophrenia and cancer

Linda Ganzini, Robert Socherman, Jonathan Duckart, Molly Shores

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

29 Scopus citations


Objective: This study compared the quality of end-of-life care between veterans with and without schizophrenia who died of cancer in the northwestern United States. Methods: In this cross-sectional study, medical records of 60 veterans with schizophrenia and 196 with no major mental illness who died of cancer were compared on hospice enrollment, palliative and life-sustaining interventions, advance directives, and site of death. Results: Among veterans with schizophrenia, 58% had an advance directive, 73% received an opiate before hospice enrollment, 63% had a physician order to forgo cardiopulmonary resuscitation, 55% were hospice enrolled, and 27% died in the hospital. Schizophrenia patients had longer hospice stays (107±144 versus 63±96 days, p=.05) and more physician orders for life-sustaining treatment (15% versus 5%, p=.006) compared with veterans without mental illness. Conclusions: On most measures, veterans with schizophrenia who died of cancer received comparable or better endof-life care than veterans without mental illness.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)725-728
Number of pages4
JournalPsychiatric Services
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 2010
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Medicine


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