The Foundation for Jefferson Healthcare jointly with Jefferson Healthcare’s Hospice Program stress the importance of educating our community on the importance of end-of-life preparation, an eventual outcome for all. Addressing important decisions beforehand provides choice-certainty for you and your family during actual time these decisions have to be finalized.

When facing end-of life care, you will want to know your options. Hospice services are there to help you to navigate many issues. Hospice services provide twenty four hour on-call services, responding to emergencies related to symptom management or other concerns affecting care. Non twenty four hour services provided are assistance with bathing, feeding, and other activities of daily living. The end-of-life phase can be a puzzle, and hospice services are just one piece of that puzzle. At this time in our lives, the healthcare system is stretched tightly. We all need to look for creative ways to obtain care.

Here are some preliminary questions you can ask yourself, family, friends. We’ve also added a resource that could be helpful.

  1. Do I have an Advanced Directive? (Sometimes referred to as a Living Will.)
  2. If I do have an Advanced Directive, do my chosen people know where to find it?
  3. Does my phone have my emergency information that anyone can access?
  4. Are my family and friends willing and able to provide care and comfort for me as needed when I enter Hospice?
  5. Since my social groups might be able to help with parts of care, (i.e., my church, my book club, garden club, and others who willingly could provide meals and manage other small activities to help), have I made this contact information available?
  6. Do I need to look at other resources in my community, to supplement needed care when I enter Hospice?
  7. Olympic Area on Aging has a website (o3a.org) with a wealth of information about many of these issues. They have an office in in Port Townsend, 2500 W. Sims Way Suite 203. Toll-free phone: 800-801-0050; Local phone: 360-385-2552

Learn how to discuss your loved one’s wishes for end-of-life care at The Conversation Project.

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