This paper reports the findings from a study to investigate health care professionals’ views regarding the use and acceptability of two similar paper-based advance care planning (ACP) documents designed for older adults in their last year of life to inform end-of-life care provision. Participants’ views of using PEACE (Proactive Elderly Persons Advisory Care), a nurse led model with community geriatrician oversight, and PACe (proactive anticipatory care plan), a general practitioner (GP) led model implemented by two clinical commissioning groups (CCGs) as part of a wider pilot to determine their ability to improve end-of-life care provision, were explored. Hospital admission avoidance matrons took part in face to face interviews and care staff employed in private residential care homes took part in individual telephone interviews to explore their views of using the PEACE tool. Telephone interviews were conducted with GPs to explore their views of PACe. GPs and admission avoidance matrons were employed by CCGs and all study participants were recruited from the South East of England, where data collection took place in 2015. The data were analysed thematically. Findings from the study demonstrate how both tools provide a focus to ACP discussions to inform individual end-of-life care preferences. The importance of relationships was a pivotal theme established, trusting inter-professional relationships to enable multidisciplinary teamwork and a prior relationship with the older person (or their proxy in the case of cognitive impairment) to enable such conversations in the first place. Both tools enabled participants to think critically and reflect on their own practice. Notwithstanding participants’ views to improve their layout, using a paper-based approach to deliver streamlined ACP and end-of-life care was a theme to emerge as a potential barrier, and highlighted problems with accessing paper-based documentation, accuracy and care co-ordination in the context of multidisciplinary team working. The value of technology in overcoming this barrier and underpinning ACP as a means to help simplify service provision, promote integrated professional practice and provide seamless care, was put forward as a way forward.
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