Conversations in Caregiving: End-Of-Life Planning

It’s time to HAVE THE CONVERSATION about End of Life.

It’s about time.

It’s about time we okayed The CONVERSATION, and held it. You know, the one about how we might want things to go for ourselves.

end-of-life planning, Raleigh-Durham, N.C.It’s about time: yours, to take the time to think, and talk, about end-of-life planning and care.

It’s about time: taking simple action to do right by ourselves and others.

It’s about time: to acknowledge the fact that our nation is changing what we do and what we are expecting from our healthcare system.

It’s about time: to explore the idea that we could improve care and contain costs as a community, as a family, and as a nation. Until recently little emphasis has been placed on discussion and planning of this important time of a person’s life. Whether we label the topic ‘Advance Directives’ or ‘End-of-Life Planning’ many simply have not wished to talk (or think) about it.

It’s about time, and money: (and commentary) that it’s a shame we as taxpayers have to pay for conversation when it could be the natural thing to do. Sadly, it took deflecting the Conversation over to a medical-insurance debate resulting in our government finally enabling The Conversation — for a fee.

It’s about time: that your healthcare provider will now be paid to HAVE THE CONVERSATION with you. While many are breathing a sigh of relief (“Good, someone will initiate this important dialogue”), there are physicians who display reticence to handle the topic. (“I am not comfortable with this when my job is to heal.”) The insurance industry questioned why it should even be a “covered event,” and billable by physicians. (“Why, that’s not diagnosis and treatment, that’s just talking!”)

It’s about time, and irony:  that we with our taxes sustain the government agency we have placed in the position of suggesting what we must or should do to address our own personal planning.

It’s about time: to help America address End-of-Life planning. Ellen Goodman, American journalist and Pulitzer prize-winning columnist saw this coming. She founded The Conversation Project to promote end-of-life planning. The Project’s Conversation Starter Kit gives tips to patients on talking to loved ones and medical professionals about their wishes. It has been downloaded more than 200,000 times, and you will find it here.

It’s about time: to ask the simple yet often difficult questions of ourselves. What would I want, and under what circumstances? How might I plan that out and whom will I tell? And I will ask you the same:

        What would you want, and when? How will you lay that out, and with whom?

It’s about time: to be thinking of others.  Along with you, what about those who for some reason do not have a voice? Who can we be for them?

It’s about time: to make a commitment that NAVIGATE NC will also address the need. My best work is done when I can provoke thought, raise an issue, turn a head, encourage someone to visit a need… and I hope I am doing that now.

It’s about time, and realizing the absolute gain(!) from THE CONVERSATION, the results of which are peace of mind. Autonomy. Continued independence. And the gift! As a daughter and lucky recipient of planning, I knew what my parents wanted and I knew that we were making the right choices for those we so loved. There is real peace of mind that comes from simply knowing that you have done the best you can do.

It’s about time, and personal responsibility: Yes, it’s about time we took our own personal responsibility to HAVE THE CONVERSATION, craft our plan, write it down and tell someone.

If it’s about time for you and your family to HAVE THE CONVERSATION, then we can help. Let’s talk about your vision and build a plan to lay out your wishes. CONNECT WITH US on our website or call us to schedule a FREE initial consultation, (919) 628.4428.

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Image courtesy of morguefile.com

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