Date of Conferral
Raymond W. Thron
Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) requiring long-term oxygen therapy (LTOT) is an incurable lung disease often complicated by other comorbidities. Research is limited for hospitalized COPD exacerbations with LTOT and palliative care services. The purpose of this quantitative research study was to determine the correlation between palliative care interventions and COPD patient outcomes specific to an intensive care unit (ICU) stay, invasive mechanical ventilator support, physician orders for cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) code status, and hospital discharge to hospice care. The theoretical base for this study was Donabedian's quality improvement theory. The quasi-experimental, nonequivalent groups design divided COPD hospitalized patient sample into 2 groups, those with and those without palliative care, for comparison. An independent-samples t test, one-way MANOVA, and follow-up univariate ANOVAS was done to compare the means of ICU days and ventilator days; a cross tabulation, chi-square test of independence, and Fisher exact test was done to compare code status and place of hospital discharge. The mean number of the ICU days and ventilator days for palliative care patients was significantly higher than patients who did not receive palliative care. A significant interaction was found for palliative care and code status change from CPR to no CPR; however, data relating to palliative care and hospital discharge to hospice was insignificant. In conclusion, palliative care does not reduce costs by limiting the number of days spent in an ICU or the number of days on invasive mechanical ventilation; although, it may have an important role in the code status order change from CPR to no CPR to align with the patient's end of life care preference.