According to research, 90% of people say talking with loved ones about end-of-life care is important, but just 27% have actually done so and only 7% have had this conversation with their doctor. Less than a quarter of us have put our wishes in writing, although 82% say it’s important to them.
I think we can all agree, most of us don’t like uncertainty, especially if it involves our own or a loved-ones future. Still it seems so hard to face important decisions that we all need to make at some point throughout our lives. There are many things that are out of our hands but making decisions about end-of-life care is something we can control. “As humans, we’re not wired to accept death,” says Jon Radulovic, vice president of communications for the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization. “It’s frightening and final. There’s so much apprehension surrounding the topic that it’s understandable why we don’t want to focus on it.”
Regardless of why we put these decisions off, we can’t avoid the inevitable and it is far better to be prepared then have to deal with making these types of a decisions in a crisis situation. Take it one step at a time and build from there. Next time you are at your doctor’s office bring the subject up, take responsibility to have these discussions yourself. Remind yourself it’s not only about you, by doing these things you’re making your OWN decisions and taking a burden off your family by making your wishes known. Advanced Directives or “Five Wishes” is a good place to start. These documents, once filled out and properly signed are valid under the laws of most states. National Healthcare Decisions Day is the week of April 16 to April 22, which gives us plenty of time to get started! Making end-of-life choices isn’t easy, but it’s our right and responsibility to do so.
For more information on advanced directives or end-of-life planning, call us today. 702-636-0200