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Table 3 POLST completion rate according to degree of understanding

From: Completion rate of physician orders for life-sustaining treatment for patients with metastatic or recurrent cancer: a preliminary, cross-sectional study

Variable Total
(N = 101)
POLST- completion
(n = 72)
POLST non-completion
(n = 29)
p-value
Familiarity with “life sustaining treatment”, n. (%)   
 Very familiar 9 (8.9%) 7 (9.7%) 2 (6.9%)  
 Familiar 31 (30.7%) 26 (36.1%) 5 (17.2%)  
 Fair understanding 35 (34.7%) 27 (37.5%) 8 (27.6%)  
 Not familiar 15 (14.9%) 7 (9.7%) 8 (27.6%)  
 Hardly know about it 10 (9.9%) 5 (6.9%) 5 (17.2%)  
 Unaware 1 (1.0%) 0 (0.0%) 1 (3.4%)  
  Median scorea 3.14 3.32 2.68 0.016
Information sources b
 Family or other people 6 (5.9%) 6 (8.3%) 0 (0.0%)  
 Newspaper or television news 50 (49.5%) 36 (50.0%) 14 (48.3%)  
 Internet 7 (6.9%) 6 (8.3%) 1 (3.4%)  
 Physician 29 (28.7%) 23 (31.9%) 6 (20.7%)  
 Never heard about it 11 (10.9%) 6 (8.3%) 5 (17.2%)  
Familiarity with “POLST”, n. (%)
 Very familiar 11 (10.9%) 8 (11.1%) 3 (10.3%)  
 Familiar 22 (21.8%) 18 (25.0%) 4 (13.8%)  
 Fair understanding 26 (25.7%) 22 (30.6%) 4 (13.8%)  
 Not familiar 20 (19.8%) 13 (18.1%) 7 (24.1%)  
 Hardly know about it 22 (21.8%) 11 (15.3%) 11 (37.9%)  
 Unaware 0 (0.0%) 0 (0.0%) 0 (0.0%)  
  Median scorea 2.80 2.99 2.34 0.036
Information sources b
 Family or other people 7 (6.9%) 5 (6.9%) 2 (6.9%)  
 Newspaper or television news 38 (37.6%) 27 (37.5%) 11 (37.9%)  
 Internet 7 (6.9%) 6 (8.3%) 1 (3.4%)  
 Physician 40 (39.6%) 32 (44.4%) 8 (27.6%)  
 Never heard about it 17 (16.8%) 10 (13.9%) 7 (24.1%)  
  1. a Median score of awareness when “very familiar” was scored 5 and “never heard about it” was scored 1
  2. b Multiple responses were allowed. All percentage data were presented with the percentage of cases