Planning & Health Care Decisions
What is Advance Care Planning?
All adults can benefit from thinking about what their healthcare choices would be if they are unable to speak for themselves. It is important to have an advance care planning conversation with your loved ones so they will know what medical care you desire, especially if you are unable to speak for yourself. Regardless of your age or health, documenting your wishes today means your loved ones won’t have to make difficult decisions later.
To guide you in these discussions, consider the following, adapted from the advance care planning workbook “Five Wishes”:
These decisions can be written down in an “advance directive” so that others know what they are. Advance directives come in two main forms:
The Federal Patient Self-Determination Act requires that all Medicare-participating healthcare facilities inquire about and provide information to patients on Advance Directives; it also requires these facilities to provide community education on Advance Directives. All healthcare facilities are required to:
The Indiana POST form is a standardized form containing orders by a treating physician based on a patient’s preferences for end-of-life care.
The links below explore a variety of resources to help you make, discuss and document future healthcare wishes and decisions.
AARP: End of Life Planning
American Bar Association: Toolkit for Health Care Advance Planning
ISDH Advance Directive Resource Center
National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization
The Indiana POST* Program