Chetna Malhotra is an Assistant Professor at Lien Centre for Palliative Care and the Signature Program in Health Services and Systems Research, Duke-NUS. She is a physician specializing in Community Medicine and Public Health. Her work focuses on conducting health services research in the area of palliative and end-of-life care for patients with advanced serious illnesses including those with advanced cancer, heart failure, renal failure and dementia, with the goal of improving delivery of palliative care services to these populations. Specific areas of interest in the context of end-of-life research include: (1) understanding and meeting care preferences of patients and their caregivers, for example through advance care planning, (2) medical decision making, (3) patient-physician communication and (4) end-of-life suffering. She has experience leading survey-research studies, cohort studies, trials and qualitative research, and has authored or co-authored more than 60 peer reviewed publications in medical literature.
She is currently leading several research projects:
(1) Panel Study investigating status of cognitively impaired elderly in Singapore (PISCES) – This study is funded by the Ministry of Health Health Services Research Grant. It is a multi-centre cohort study of caregivers of patients with advanced dementia to assess patients’ end-of-life care, health care utilization, cost, quality of life, decision making and suffering during the last year of life.
(2) Communication quality between physicians and cancer patients in Singapore: This study assesses the preferences for communication and perception of quality of communication among advanced cancer patients with their physicians.
(3) Impact of advance care planning on care for patients with advanced heart failure: A randomized controlled trial - This is a 2-arm randomized controlled trial to assess the effectiveness of advance care planning in meeting patient’s end of life care preferences
She is co-investigator on several projects (selected):
(1) Costs and Medical Care of Patients with Advanced Serious Illness in Singapore (COMPASS) Study – This is a cohort study of 600 patients with advanced cancers to assess their health care utilization, cost, and quality of life during the last year of their life.
(2) Singapore cohort of patients with advanced heart failure (SCOPAH) - This is a cohort study of 250 patients with advanced heart failure to better understand the relationship between patient preferences, health care access, utilization, costs, and quality of life and to identify strategies to improve the end of life experience for these patients.