Talk about what matters
Just came across a helpful website on advance care planning. Provides solid background and gets into important things like
- how to talk with your loved ones,
- what to do if family members disagree,
- how to talk with doctors, nurses and other healthcare providers and
- selecting who will speak for you.
Sometimes people think advance care planning is all about describing specific health conditions and what you want done. That’s often a waste of time, however, because it’s unlikely that you’ll predict exactly what will happen with your health. The site provides some good practical advice on this, saying:
Sometimes sharing your personal concerns and values, spiritual beliefs, or views about what makes life worth living can be as helpful as talking about specific treatments and circumstances.
Sometimes people think that once they’ve signed their advance directive document and/or had a discussion with a family member, the advance care planning task is done. They want to wrap it up in a nice bundle, and tuck it away. However, real life brings changes in health condition, new experiences and changed views. The website provides more practical advice, saying:
Reassess your decisions over time. These are not simple questions and your views may change. It is important that you review these issues and discuss your choices as your personal health or circumstances change your life.
The website, called CaringInfo.org, is provided by the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization.
We’ve gladly added this website to our Resources page.