End-of-life care planning. Start the Conversation
Posted on Jan 02, 2012
In life, we prepare for everything…
college, marriage, children, retirement.
But we seldom talk about preparing for the end.
Planning for end-of-life care is as important as all the other life plans you’ve made. Having a plan makes it easier for you, your doctor and your loved ones if, in the future, decisions about treatment need to be made at a time when you are unable to. Talking about your wishes while you’re in good health allows you and your loved ones to be prepared in a health crisis that can happen to anyone at any time, and gives you peace of mind, knowing that your wishes will be honored.
“Start the Conversation” is a public education initiative sponsored by RAVNAH in an effort to motivate people to start the conversation about Advanced Care Planning as well as complete documentation to support their choices. Planning ahead for these choices now, while you are able to, is a gift you can give to yourself and those you love.
You may have thought about making an Advance Directive for Health Care or you may have already signed one. In either case, you should be aware that just having a written Advance Directive by itself does not ensure that your wishes will be understood and respected. Studies have shown that standard Advance Directive forms do little to influence end-of-life decisions without:
- Informed, thoughtful reflection about your wishes and values, and
- Personal communication between you and your decision-makers before a crisis occurs.
Good advance planning for health care decisions is a continuing conversation – about values, priorities, the meaning and quality of one’s life.
The hospice team at RAVNAH understands that it’s difficult to discuss such a sensitive issue as end-of-life.
We are here to make it easier, with the skill, caring and compassion to help patients and their families face difficult choices.
We have developed worksheets, resources and suggestions to help you think about your values as they relate to medical care decisions and to discuss your choices with your agent and loved ones.
Having a plan makes it easier to ensure that your wishes are honored. Rutland Area VNA & Hospice can help. Call us at 775-0568