Letters Section Editor: Stephen J. Lurie,
MD, PhD, Senior Editor.
In Reply: Drs Weiss and Finucane are concerned
that our reliance on bereaved family members to report on the quality of end-of-life
care is more problematic than we acknowledged. We believe that this is more
valid to retrospectively interview bereaved family members than to prospectively
assess dying persons. First, a substantial number of dying persons are unable
to be interviewed in the last month of life. Additionally, the difficulties
of case finding makes a prospective design costly and biased since many persons
simply are not counted among the dying until after they have died.
Teno JM, Mor V, Welch LC, Wetle T, Shield R, Casey V, Clarridge BR. Memories of Loved Ones About Care at the End of Life—Reply. JAMA. 2004;291(12):1445-1446. doi:10.1001/jama.291.12.1446