Thursday, April 16, 2009

National Healthcare Decisions Day

 Updated 3/2017-- all links (except to my own posts) removed as many no longer active. and it was easier than checking each one.

Nathan A Kottkamp, a healthcare attorney,  is the chair and founder of the grassroots effort to promote advance care planning and healthcare decision making,  National Healthcare Decisions Day (NHDD).  This day was chosen in a nod to Benjamin Franklin and his adage “Nothing in life is certain but death and taxes."   Yesterday, April 15th, was tax day here in the United States.
More than 75 national organizations, plus 660 state and local organizations, will have teams at hospitals, nursing homes, hospices, doctor's offices and even libraries to explain the benefits of advance directives.  Those who wish will be assisted in writing / signing living wills and other medical directives. The services are free.  For a list of participants check here.
It is not only important to discuss these end of life issues, but it is important to occasionally review our decisions and make changes to them as necessary. 
Kotthamp is quoted as saying "No one likes to think about the possibility of a life-threatening injury or disease, but the simple act of creating an advance directive can turn out to be an incredible gift for loved ones in the event of an accident or severe illness.  No matter where you live, you can fill out an advance directive without hiring a lawyer. It's easy to do and is free."  

I had trouble finding any specific locations around Arkansas.  If you know of any, please, let me know and I’ll add them.
White County Medical Center (Batesville, Arkansas)
Arkansas Advance Directive; Planning for Important Healthcare Decisions (pdf file)

The National Healthcare Decisions Day website has some great resources about advance directives and how to get one.

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