April 16 is National Healthcare Decision Day (NHDD). Today there is a concerted effort to inspire, educate and empower the public and providers about the importance of advance care planning. This year’s theme is “It’s Always Too Early, Until It’s Too Late, ” emphasizes the importance for patients to make clear their wishes regarding healthcare, and for providers to respect those wishes, no matter what they may be.
Advance care planning ensures that if you ever find yourself in a position where you cannot express your own wishes in matters of healthcare, there will be a system in place where your concerns will be voiced, and more importantly, heard. On NHDD, all adults can benefit from thinking about what their healthcare choices would be if they were unable to speak for themselves.
Bristol Hospice joins organizations across the U.S. that are focused on educating the public of the importance of advance care planning. Now is the time to consider healthcare choices if you are unable to speak for yourself. Decisions can be written down in an advance directive so that others know your wishes.