National Healthcare Decisions Day in April 16

Categories: Community Engagement.

National Healthcare Decisions Day is almost here! On April 16, we will be celebrating the 14th annual National Healthcare Decisions Day (NHDD). This is a grassroots effort, and YOU make it happen. Thank you.

Here are a few reminders from the Conversation Projects as we prepare for NHDD 2021:

  • April 16th  is a Friday.  Consider providing advance care planning resources leading up to that Friday and encourage completion over the weekend.
  • Here are some resources and materials to help you think through your health care wishes and learn more about choosing or being a health care proxy: Conversation Starter Guide, Guide to Choosing Health Care Proxy, Guide to Being a Health Care Proxy.
  • Encourage people to take an intergenerational approach: seniors, middle-aged and young adults all should have a plan. Also, those from mixed families, who are solo agers and/or have minor children can leverage NHDD as the perfect opportunity to clarify who they would like to designate as their health care proxy.
  • Focus on higher-level factors to help guide decision-making.  Avoid getting too technical with particular types of treatment and absolute terms like: always, never, everything, and nothing.  Those terms can result in more confusion than having no instructions at all.
  • Use advance care planning for the full array of health issues, not just end-of-life.  Advance directives can be extremely valuable for mental health issues, non-end-of-life treatment priorities (such as blood transfusions, amputations, or the use of tissue derived from a particular kind or source), and anything else that would guide decision-making if a person loses capacity.
  • Share broadly.  Please use all the leverage available to you to get the word out about NHDD.  Remember, you don’t need to share your particular choices, you just need to share the fact that you have engaged in advance care planning in the first place.

Other NHDD Resources to Tap

  • Check out our NHDD 2021 ready-made toolkit  and NHDD resource page.
  • National ACP Week – The Australian Equivalent to NHDD, offers an incredible repository of resources that could be used/adapted for your NHDD events. Including this video you can share, encouraging people to talk to the important people in their lives about what matters most.
  • Honoring Choices Pacific Northwest Join Honoring Choices as they celebrate NHDD! They are offering resources, materials and events to the public during the month of April.
  • Read this blog to learn about 5 ideas that will help you get involved in NHDD 2021!
  • And, listen to our February 2021 call and access the slides from the call to learn about NHDD’s history, impact and changes given COVID.

As always, please remember that every single effort matters.  Even if you only inspire one person to act on NHDD, you are making a difference!


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