African American Bereaved Family Members' Perceptions of the Quality of Hospice Care: Lessened Disparities, But Opportunities to Improve Remain

Ramona L. Rhodes, Joan M. Teno, Stephen R. Connor

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

37 Scopus citations


Previous research has documented striking disparities in bereaved family members' perceptions of the quality of end-of-life care between African American and white decedents. Using data from the 2005 repository of the Family Evaluation of Hospice Care survey, we examined whether this disparity in quality of end-of-life care persists once an African American is enrolled in hospice. Of the 121,817 decedents whose proxies were surveyed, 4095 were non-Hispanic black (African American), and 97,525 were non-Hispanic white. There were no statistically significant differences with regard to decedents' gender. Length of stay on hospice was similar across racial groups. Although previous research has demonstrated striking disparities in the perceived quality of end-of-life care, we found that there were either no differences (quality ratings scores) or less of a disparity in perceptions of concerns with the quality of end-of-life care when compared to the results of a previously reported national mortality follow-back survey, suggesting that though disparities in perceptions of care at end of life persist, on hospice they improve to some degree.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)472-479
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Pain and Symptom Management
Issue number5
StatePublished - Nov 1 2007



  • Hospice
  • bereaved family members
  • disparities
  • perceptions
  • quality

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Nursing(all)
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine

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