Despite recent gains in public awareness of the need for advance care planning, studies indicate that most Americans have not exercised their right to make decisions about their health care in the event that they cannot speak for themselves.
Along with more than 1,000 national, state and community organizations, Monongahela Valley Hospital will participate in National Healthcare Decisions Day on Monday, April 16, offering free informed and thoughtful guidance about making one’s future health care wishes known to family, friends and medical providers.
The National Healthcare Decisions Day Initiative strives to ensure that all adults in the United States with decision-making capacity have the information and opportunity to communicate and document their personal health care wishes through advance care planning.
MVH Patient Representative Renee Hurley will be available in the hospital’s lobby from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. to provide information and assistance to the public on completing one’s advance directives, with either a medical power of attorney or a living will.
“Facing our own mortality or that of our loved ones is so difficult and even scary, but in the face of a serious or life-threatening illness, it’s better for the family and health care workers to know a patient’s wishes,” said Ms. Hurley. “We encourage all MVH employees and community members to complete their own advance directives so their loved ones won’t have to guess what’s best in difficult times.”
According to a Pew Research Center study, 71 percent of Americans have thought about their end-of-life treatment preferences, 95 percent have heard of a living will, but only 29 percent have written a living will.
The information and assistance in completing the forms at MVH is free. Parking will also be free for participants.
Visit www.nhdd.org to view a three minute “Speak Up” video on the importance of starting the conversation about one’s end-of-life-care wishes.
For more information, contact Ms. Hurley at 724-258-1076 or visit www.nhdd.org