Some 71% of all adults have no plans in place should they need care at the end of their life, and of the 29% that have, just three in 10 have outlined the medical treatment they would refuse in the event they could not communicate this themselves, the survey for Which? Later Life Care suggests.
Of those who have planned for end-of-life care, 93% have written a will outlining what should happen to their property, possessions and money, 60% have organised power of attorney, and 58% have discussed their end of life care preferences with family or friends.
However the survey suggests that only 31% of those who had never been involved in arranging hospice care knew that it was free for everyone.
Furthermore, 62% were unaware that hospices could provide care at home as well as in their facilities.
Alex Hayman, Which? managing director of public markets, said: "Although it can be uncomfortable to think about, by taking the time to consider your plans for the end of your life, you can help ensure that when it comes, your loved ones will be able to respect your wishes and preferences.
"There are a number of different options available for arranging end of life care, and it's important to understand what they all entail and how they might differ."