A mixed methods analysis of patients’ advance care planning values in outpatient oncology: Person-Centered Oncologic Care and Choices (P-COCC) Academic Article uri icon


MeSH Major

  • Blood-Brain Barrier
  • Cerebral Infarction
  • Subarachnoid Hemorrhage


  • © 2019, Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature. Abstract: Purpose: Person-Centered Oncologic Care and Choices (P-COCC) combines an advance care planning (ACP) value-focused patient interview with a care goal video decision aid. Our randomized study showed that P-COCC was acceptable but increased participant distress, compared with video-alone and usual care study arms. This mixed methods approach explores the ACP values in the P-COCC arm and their relationship to the distress phenomenon. Methods: Qualitative thematic analysis of the 46 audio-recorded P-COCC interview transcripts with advanced gastrointestinal cancer patients was performed by multiple reviewers. Quantitative (Likert scale) changes in ACP values were compared across study arms. ACP themes and value change were analyzed in participants with increased distress. Results: Transcript analysis resulted in thematic saturation and identified eight distinct themes on ACP values relating to end-of-life wishes, communication needs, and psychosocial supports. Of 98 participants (33 P-COCC, 43 videos, 22 usual care) who completed the change in value measure, there was no difference detected with P-COCC compared with either video (p = 0.052) or usual care (p = 0.105) arms alone, but P-COCC led to a frequency distribution of more change in personal values compared with the other study arms combined (p = 0.043). Among the subset of P-COCC participants with increased distress, there was no statistical relationship with change in values. Conclusions: The ACP paradigm P-COCC both informs and supports patients in individualized, value-based decision-making. Distress is not associated with changes in ACP values and may be a necessary, at least transient, byproduct of discussing sensitive but pertinent topics about end-of-life medical care.

publication date

  • January 2019



  • Academic Article


Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1007/s00520-019-04910-1