Advance Care Planning can help to inform designated people about your preferences for medical and mental health care. Most people have not discussed this- it can be difficult to talk about- but it is important. Advanced Care Planning means learning, thinking about what you want, writing it down and sharing it with providers and family so that they will be able to make health care decisions and advocate for you if you are unable to speak for yourself at the time. This can be useful for:
- Young people 18 and older who need to designate their own emergency contacts (it may not be practical for parents to provide emergency help if they live far away, are estranged or disabled).
- Adults and children with physical or mental health conditions who want to make sure that their care will provided according to their wishes if they cannot direct it themselves due to temporary or continuing illness.
- People who have life-limiting conditions who want to plan ahead for end of life care.
- A tool for communicating with health care providers about your hopes and preferences.
Minnesota’s Honoring Health Choices Advance Planning forms, resources and information are available online at Fairview Health Services (fairview.org) or from HonoringChoices.org (612-362-3704). Medical direction forms are also available for mental health care from NAMI.org. You can also ask your health care provider or contact parish nurse Jill Stewart, 651-699-1378 ext 3031.