Starting today, the partners will leverage National Healthcare Decision Day, recognized April 16, to kick off a grassroots and digital campaign to stimulate family conversations and offer local and national resources about end-of-life care options.
“We know that 90 percent of Americans say that talking about their end-of-life care wishes is important, but that only 30 percent of people are actually having these conversations. Our goal is to close this gap,” says Ellen Goodman, Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist and co-founder of The Conversation Project. “People fear that speaking to their loved ones about their final days would be too grim, but in reality, these are among the most intimate and meaningful conversations people can have.”
Capital Caring has served patients and families struggling with advanced illness for more than 40 years. The comment Capital Caring employees hear most frequently is, “I wish I had known about you (hospice care) sooner.”
Partnering with an organization dedicated to having the conversation before it’s too late, will help Capital Caring educate the countless members of our community about value of making decisions about their wishes for end-of-life care.
Capital Caring’s service area includes northern Virginia to Fredericksburg and Richmond; suburban Maryland; the District of Columbia; and 13 counties in northern West Virginia. It is the home of the Commonwealth of Virginia’s POST (Physician Orders for Scope of Treatment) and part of the POLST (Physician Orders for Life-Sustaining Treatment) Paradigm that originated in Oregon in the 1990s to combat the “failure of advance directives.”
Since August 2012, The Conversation Project has been inspiring end-of-life conversations. The Conversation Project’s website is the heart of the campaign’s work, which includes The Conversation Project Starter Kit, a free, downloadable, step-by-step guide developed to help individuals and families start the conversation about end-of-life care.