Joint modeling of longitudinal data such as quality of life data and survival data is important for palliative care researchers to draw efficient inferences because it can account for the associations between those two types of data. Modeling quality of life on a retrospective from death time scale is useful for investigators to interpret the analysis results of palliative care studies which have relatively short life expectancies. However, informative censoring remains a complex challenge for modeling quality of life on the retrospective time scale although it has been addressed for joint models on the prospective time scale. To fill this gap, we develop a novel joint modeling approach that can address the challenge by allowing informative censoring events to be dependent on patients’ quality of life and survival through a random effect. There are two sub-models in our approach: a linear mixed effect model for the longitudinal quality of life and a competing-risk model for the death time and dropout time that share the same random effect as the longitudinal model. Our approach can provide unbiased estimates for parameters of interest by appropriately modeling the informative censoring time. Model performance is assessed with a simulation study and compared with existing approaches. A real-world study is presented to illustrate the application of the new approach.

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