Planning is a part of life. There’s excitement in looking toward the future – college, career, a home, vacations – these are all instrumental components of life that are planned. Even still, after we have successfully accomplished educational goals, career milestones, we look forward to retirement and the enjoyment of the life we can live. However, the planning should not stop there.
April 16 is National Healthcare Decisions Day and was founded in 2007 by Nathan Kottkamp. Kottkamp completed his own advanced directive1 when he was 20 years old. He states, “It was empowering to know that my loved ones knew my wishes. I now know that I was an outlier to have created an advance directive when I was so young, but the fact is we all should discuss and document our health care wishes, regardless of our age or current health status.” At Chaplaincy Health Care, we encourage you to consider who you want to walk alongside you through your journey during the frail moments and final days. With this communication in place, you can have peace of mind you will be surrounded with the best care possible.
There are great resources available to help guide you through the conversation:
- Engage With Grace: Download “The One Slide” project. Be able to answer the questions for yourself and your loved ones.
- The Conversation Project: Download “Starter Kit” – Learn more about how to choose a health care proxy AND how to be a health care proxy
- Five Wishes: Download “Five Wishes” – Use this guide to walk you through the 5 most important things to talk about when it comes to advanced care planning.
- Conversations Before the Crisis: Some topics are much easier to talk about than others. This booklet is a starting point for necessary conversations.
- Begin the Conversation: Face the Elephant in the room. Using the guide (download) you can begin to educate, prepare, communicate, document, act and empower.
- Ask Tough Questions – This guide outlines tough questions to ask your healthcare team.
Start the conversation today and continue to live out life to the fullest in every way.
1 Advanced Directives are legal documents that allow you to plan and make your own end-of-life wishes known in the event that you are unable to communicate.