Communication & Medicine, Vol 11, No 2 (2014)

Engaging death: Narrative and constructed dialogue in Advance Care Planning discussions

Gabriella Modan, Seuli Bose Brill
Issued Date: 17 Aug 2015


Advance Care Planning (ACP) remains extremely low in the US, due to numerous institutional and cultural barriers and discomfort in discussing death. There is a need for guidance about how patient and healthcare providers can effectively engage in ACP discussion. Here we analyze the linguistic strategies that focus-group participants use when discussing ACP in detailed ways. Prevalent linguistic structures in effective ACP discussions were loved ones’ end-of-life narratives, hypothetical narratives, and constructed dialogue. In elucidating spontaneous, unprompted approaches to effective discussion of end-of-life issues, such research can help to dislodge communicative barriers to ACP so that more people are prepared to engage the process.

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DOI: 10.1558/cam.v11i2.18616


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