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Starting conversations about advance care planning

Who would speak for you if you couldn't speak for yourself? Presbyterian Homes & Services is dedicated to helping you talk about your wishes for end-of-life care with your family, health care providers and with us. Advance care planning is not an easy subject to open. Nor is the conversation just for those who are older. At any age, a medical crisis could leave someone too ill to make his or her own health care decisions.  

In the states where PHS communities are located there are provisions for advance care planning. However, each state has differences in how they share this information with the public.

The staff and residents at PHS communities in Minnesota are being introduced to Honoring Choices, a program of Presbyterian Homes & Services (PHS). Honoring Choices is dedicated to helping you talk about your wishes for end-of-life care with your family, health care providers and with us. Honoring Choices is based on the initiative by the same name developed through the Twin Cities Medical Society with participation from PHS and other area health care organizations.

Wisconsin and Iowa residents can find information and resources about advance care planning through their health care provider or PHS staff.  PHS campus pastors can also provide counsel and guidance as you open conversations with family members about end-of-life issues and your preferences.

All three states have laws that allow you to document and inform others of your health care wishes through advance care planning by completing a written document called an advance care directive. This document has legal authority and tells your doctor, family and others your values and wishes about health care. It allows you to name a person, as your “health care agent,” to decide for you if you are unable to speak for yourself. If you have an advance care directive in another state, you will need to update it for the state where you currently reside.  

Making your medical decisions known can give you peace of mind that your wishes will be respected, your health care provider will know your preference and you will lessen the burden on family and friends from having to make decisions for you.

To learn more about advance directives and end-of-life care services, visit the web sites below. You may also contact Rev. Chris Wheatley, PHS Director of Christian Ministry and Social Services by phone at (612) 269-1384 or by email.

Optage: www.optage.org/honoringchoices
Minnesota: www.honoringchoices.org
Wisconsin: www.wisconsinmedicalsociety.org/professional/hcw
Iowa: www.iowaaging.gov


 

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