Recent research describes some challenges with advance care planning. For example: people change their minds, and it is hard for people to imagine into the future what their healthcare wishes may be when they do not have personal experience on which to draw. Additional research also identifies what works, and what is useful and effective practice. One key is having a trusted person who can act on the person’s behalf when they are unable to act and formalizing that relationship in a healthcare power of attorney.
This session on advance care planning and healthcare decision making will focus on four critical elements in healthcare decision making and advance care planning:
- How do you help someone identify the person “who” can serve as a healthcare power of attorney?
- What options exist for people who have no unpaid supports in their lives? What is the role of the service provider and how can we help people find that person “who” can serve as a decision maker?
- What are the implications of culture on helping someone identify “who” can be their healthcare power of attorney?
- What is the role of state surrogate decision making laws in designating “who” will make a healthcare decision?