Community-based game intervention to improve South Asian Indian Americans’ engagement with advanced care planning
OBJECTIVE: Advance care planning (ACP) allows individuals to express their preferences for medical treatment in the event that they become incapable of making their own decisions. This study assessed the efficacy of a conversation game intervention for increasing South Asian Indian Americans’ (SAIAs’) engagement in ACP behaviors as well as the game’s acceptability and cultural appropriateness among SAIAs. DESIGN: Eligible community-dwelling SAIAs were recruited at SAIA cultural events held in central Texas during the summer of 2016. Pregame questionnaires included demographics and the 55-item ACP Engagement Survey. Played in groups of 3-5, the game consists of 17 open-ended questions that prompt discussions of end-of-life issues. After each game session, focus groups and questionnaires were used to examine the game’s cultural appropriateness and self-rated conversation quality. Postintervention responses on the ACP Engagement Survey and rates of participation in ACP behaviors were collected after 3 months through phone interviews or online surveys. Data were analyzed using descriptive statistics, frequencies, and paired t-tests comparing pre/post averages at a .05 significance level. RESULTS: Of the 47 participants, 64% were female, 62% had graduate degrees, 92% had lived in the U.S. for >10 years, 87% were first-generation immigrants, and 74% had no advance directive prior to the game. At the 3-month follow-up, 58% of participants had completed at least one ACP behavior, 42% had discussed end-of-life issues with loved ones, 15% did so with their healthcare providers, and 18% had created an advanced directive. ACP Engagement Survey scores increased significantly on all four of the process subscales by 3 months postgame. CONCLUSION: SAIA individuals who played a conversation game had a relatively high rate of performing ACP behaviors 3 months after the intervention. These findings suggest that conversation games may be useful tools for motivating people from minority communities to engage in ACP behaviors.