Letters to the Editor

Suggests families discuss wishes

Our community is setting the standard in Washington state for promoting the benefits of medical advance care planning. PeaceHealth’s Dr. Bree Johnston, medical director of palliative care, is a leader in that effort.

Palliative care provides a continuum of care where patients with advanced illness and their families are supported regardless of their stage of disease, prognosis, where they live, or who is paying for their care.

I urge readers to take their Thanksgiving gathering as an opportunity to “talk turkey over turkey” and discuss what your wishes are if you became too ill to speak for yourself. With multiple generations united at the table, the time is ideal for grandma and grandpa, mom and dad, Uncle Bob and Aunt Jane, and you to have this important conversation.

The outcome of these important conversations is saying to our loved ones, “I care about you.” Improving advance care planning is a gift to our families — by planning ahead, we take the burden off of them when a health crisis develops.

Whatcom Alliance for Health Advancement will help you explore options for advance care planning, reflect upon goals, and connect those goals to end of life care decisions. To schedule an advance care planning discussion or appointment, call 360.788.6526 or waha.acp@hinet.org

Micki Jackson, Bellingham

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