To the Editor: In their Special Communication,
Dr Bach and colleagues raise important limitations in the use of the retrospective
approach to studying end-of-life care.1 However,
we believe that research that uses multiple methods is needed to examine a
complex phenomenon such as dying. Given the uncertainties of prognostication,
retrospective assessment of decedents remains an important methodology to
examine the quality of end-of-life care.
Teno JM, Mor V. Resurrecting Treatment Histories of Dead Patients. JAMA. 2005;293(13):1591-1592. doi:10.1001/jama.293.13.1591-a