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We encourage All adults regardless of health or age to complete an advance directive.
Currently, you make all your medical decisions if you can communicate.
Think about: What type of medical care would you want if you had a sudden accident or illness and couldn’t speak for yourself?
Who would you trust to make medical decisions on your behalf?
Make Your Own Choices
You have the right to make decisions about the kind of healthcare treatment you want. But what if you are physically unable to make those choices known?.
Your choices should be documented in an Advance Healthcare Directive so they are known to your family members and healthcare providers.
Conversations are the Key!
Having conversations with your family, loved ones and close friends is important so they understand what’s important to you and can support the choices you make for your own healthcare. Conversations get everyone on the same page and reduce disagreements, angst and guilt when decisions are made.
The Advance Care Planning team includes certified facilitators to meet with you, or with you and your agent, to have a conversation and complete your personal Advance Care Directive.
Why make your healthcare wishes known?
- 90% of people say conversations are important; only 27% have done so.
- When families don’t know what your wishes are, they risk conflict with siblings, guilt, confusion, and possible life-long family divides.
- Family uncertainty and disagreements make care providers’ jobs more difficult.
- Planning takes time and plans may change as you age and health declines, start early and revisit plans often.
- Starting the conversation with your family may be difficult, but it is an important place to start.
- Help is available – at no cost – attend an information session or talk with a certified facilitator about your goals, values, and choices and document your wishes in an Advance Directive.
Who should plan?
- There is a saying that “there is always time to plan, until it is too late”.
- You must be of sound mind to sign an Advance Directive.
- Every adult has the right to make their own healthcare decisions.
- Everyone over 18 should have an Advance Directive.
What is an Advance Directive?
An Advance Directive is a document that describes when and what healthcare treatments you want and also names a healthcare agent to make decisions for you if you become unable to make or communicate choices yourself. To download a copy of the BCHIP Advance Directive click here.
What are the benefits (the “gift” to your family) of having conversations and documenting your wishes in an Advance Directive?
- You get the care you want
- Your family is more likely to be satisfied with the care you receive.
- You may enter Hospice earlier, live longer and experience a higher quality of life.
- You are more likely to die in your residence surrounded by your family.
- Your family will experience less depression and get on with their lives more easily.
How can you learn more about Advance Care Planning and create an Advance Directive at no cost?.
- Schedule a conversation with a certified facilitator at a Center of Service for Advance Care Planning to which you are encouraged to bring your agent.
- Attend a community presentation or schedule a presentation for your organization.
- Schedule a group facilitated conversations for 8 – 12 friends or colleagues.
- Talk to your doctor about the importance of advance care planning.