Getting Started with Advance Care Planning
June 29, 2022, 3:56 pm
Advance care planning means making decisions about the healthcare you would want if you were facing a medical crisis and were unable to speak for yourself.
It is best to complete the advance care planning process when you are well, taking time to consider your health care values and goals, and discuss your wishes with your family, friends and healthcare providers. Then, you need to document your choices in a legal form.
As you consider your values and wishes, ask yourself the following questions:
- What would happen if a sudden medical crisis left me unable to speak for myself?
- Who would I want to speak for me?
- What are my wishes for end-of-life care?
- Who needs copies of my advance directive documents?
- How often will I review my documents?
After you make your decisions, fill out the appropriate documentation. The 15-page Missouri PREPARE Advance Directive form has three main parts:
- Part 1 – Choose a medical decision maker
- Part 2 – Make your own healthcare choices
- Part 3 – Sign the form
Resources are available to you here in the community to help with advance care planning. Here is a list of resources offered by our partner, CoxHealth.
- Advance Care Planning information, forms and directions
- Free, monthly Advanced Directives Workshop offered at Cox Medical Center Branson
- Free, virtual Advance Care Planning Workshop
Review your advance care documents at least annually around the time of your annual doctor’s visit to ensure your documents are in keeping with your preferences over time.