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Advance care planning

April 16, 2020 | Resources | Healthy You

older man and young woman caregiver

Advance care planning is a great gift to those who matter most to you. Here are resources to help you take this important step.

National Healthcare Decisions Day (NHDD) — April 16 — brings attention to the importance of advance care planning, there has never been a more important time for making your wishes known.  

These are not ordinary times, and Nathan Kottkamp, founder of NHDD, reminds us that “the importance of advance care planning is VERY real right now.”

Comfort in times of stress

As we make plans and prepare for coronavirus (COVID-19), having the conversation about advance care planning is another element of preparedness. Learning what matters to those that matter most to us helps families, clinicians, and communities alike understand values and can bring comfort in times of stress.

“Yes, these are difficult conversations that take courage. But they are so worthwhile,” says Daleasha Hall, PeaceHealth’s system director of palliative and hospice care.

A great gift

“Thinking about our own death, losing our sense of control and ability to make our own decisions — all of the ‘what-ifs’ — can be daunting,” Daleasha says. “But advance care planning is a great gift to those who matter most to you. It allows those important people — your tribe — to know your wishes, your values, and give them a guide to follow when they need it most and when you cannot speak for yourself.”

So, have that conversation. Get your ideas, wishes, concerns, hopes and values written down. Then share them. 

To help you in completing your own advance care documents and assist others to complete theirs, check out these resources: