PREDICT: a diagnostic accuracy study of a tool for predicting mortality within one year: Who should have an advance healthcare directive?

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CARING is a screening tool developed to identify patients who have a high likelihood of death in 1 year.


This study sought to validate a modified CARING tool (termed PREDICT) using a population of patients presenting to the Emergency Department.


In total, 1000 patients aged over 55 years who were admitted to hospital via the Emergency Department between January and June 2009 were eligible for inclusion in this study.


Data on the six prognostic indicators comprising PREDICT were obtained retrospectively from patient records. One-year mortality data were obtained from the State Death Registry. Weights were applied to each PREDICT criterion, and its final score ranged from 0 to 44. Receiver operator characteristic analyses and diagnostic accuracy statistics were used to assess the accuracy of PREDICT in identifying 1-year mortality.


The sample comprised 976 patients with a median (interquartile range) age of 71 years (62–81 years) and a 1-year mortality of 23.4%. In total, 50% had ≥1 PREDICT criteria with a 1-year mortality of 40.4%. Receiver operator characteristic analysis gave an area under the curve of 0.86 (95% confidence interval: 0.83–0.89). Using a cut-off of 13 points, PREDICT had a 95.3% (95% confidence interval: 93.6–96.6) specificity and 53.9% (95% confidence interval: 47.5–60.3) sensitivity for predicting 1-year mortality. PREDICT was simpler than the CARING criteria and identified 158 patients per 1000 admitted who could benefit from advance care planning.


PREDICT was successfully applied to the Australian healthcare system with findings similar to the original CARING study conducted in the United States. This tool could improve end-of-life care by identifying who should have advance care planning or an advance healthcare directive.

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