Arbor Hospice Encourages Communication on National Healthcare Decision Day
Posted: April 5, 2013
While 82 percent of Americans say it’s important to put their end-of-life wishes in writing, only 23 percent have actually done so. National Healthcare Decision Day (NHDD) – April 16, 2013 – is dedicated to empowering individuals to express their healthcare wishes, and is a great occasion for adults of all ages to share their advance care preferences with family and friends.
Tuesday, April 16 from 7:00-8:00 p.m.
Registration begins at 6:30 p.m.
St. Paul United Church of Christ
14600 Old US 12, Chelsea, Mich. 48118
Wednesday, April 17 from 7:00-8:00 p.m.
Registration begins at 6:30 p.m.
Independence Village of Brighton Valley
7700 Nemco Way, Brighton, Mich. 48116
The benefits of a clearly defined end-of-life plan recently played out with one Arbor Hospice family. Kim Simecek and her family learned the importance of advance care discussions when her mother was diagnosed with early onset Alzheimer’s at age 62. Kim, her parents and brother all sat down to discuss the future of her mom's care. They utilized an interactive e-book, The Beneficiary Book, to help them in discussing important decisions while her mother was still able to vocalize her wishes.
Arbor Hospice suggests a number of online resources to help individuals and families discuss and document their advance care wishes.
Aging with Dignity provides the Five Wishes advance directive in a simple booklet form available in print or online. This guide, accessible via the Arbor Hospice website at www.arborhospice.org, lets family members and doctors know:
Online registries allow individuals to securely register their wishes in databases that can be accessed by health care providers when necessary. The U.S. Living Will Registry (www.uslivingwillregistry.org) stores advance directives and organ donor information, and offers labels for driver’s licenses and insurance cards to notify medical personnel that the information is in the Registry. The Peace of Mind Registry was introduced in Michigan in June 2012, and will be the first statewide database in the country. Michigan residents will be able to upload or mail signed advance directives and organ donor documents to the registry free of charge once it is established.
HIEs promote accessible health information by storing advance directives in virtual health records. The Great Lakes Health Information Exchange (www.glhie.org) serves the University of Michigan Health System. Michigan Health Connect (www.michiganhealthconnect.org) is the largest HIE in Michigan, and serves many health care providers in Southeast Michigan.
Families can also look online for tips and important topics to help foster discussion on advance care planning. Prepare (www.prepareforyourcare.org) provides assistance in an easy-to-understand format with large font and informational videos. The Conversation Project (www.theconversationproject.org) offers an interactive platform and the option to engage in conversation through social media.
Since 1984 Arbor Hospice, headquartered in Ann Arbor, MI, has been committed to providing quality, compassionate care for those experiencing life-limiting illnesses throughout southeast Michigan. Arbor Hospice is integrated into the community with the help of its experienced staff and caring volunteers through its certified hospice and palliative care services, inpatient hospice facility, grief support services and community education programs. For more information, visit www.arborhospice.org or call