First, what is National Healthcare Decisions Day? National Healthcare Decisions Day exists to inspire, educate and empower the public and providers about the importance of advance care planning.
It’s not easy to discuss planning for the “what if’s” in life, unfortunately it is not a matter of what if, but rather a matter of when. We never know when a serious illness or accident will occur that would require us to make difficult and perhaps life changing medical decisions. It is important for all of us to be proactive and have heartfelt conversations, so we are prepared when a serious health crisis strikes. Knowing our loved one's wishes around health care decisions is a gift.
Where do I start? Starting this conversation can be challenging, here is a link that provides a wealth of information to help you get the conversation started.
Top 10 Healthcare Discussion Topics
- Medical Power of Attorney/Health Care Agent Designation
- Artificial Nutrition and Hydration
- Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR)
- Do Not Resuscitate (DNR)
- Managing Pain and at Life’s End
- Hospice and Palliative Care
- Severe Brain Injury
- Autopsy and Organ Donation
- Funeral Preferences
- Living Wills/Health Care Directives
When an emergency situation happens emotions run high, and we often question ourselves on whether we are communicating our loved one's health care wishes accurately. It is for this reason that it is important to document your wishes or the wishes of your loved one. Begin this conversation with your healthcare team or check your state’s attorney general website to download the State approved health care directives/living will documents. You can find your state website at www.naag.org.
It’s important to address these tough conversations now, so when a crisis does happen decisions have already been made, and everyone can focus their attention on providing the love and support needed.
We recommend you visit the National Healthcare Decision Day website, as it offers a wealth of information.