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Conversations that Count Day 2016

Conversations that Count Day 2016

Southern DHB is asking people to have a ‘Conversation that Counts’. This is the third national awareness day for Advance Care Planning (ACP), designed to encourage people to think about, talk about, and plan for their future health care.

Held on 16 April, the campaign is coordinated by the National Advance Care Planning Co-operative for the South Island, and supported by the South Island Alliance’s Health of Older People’s group (HOPSLA).

ACP gives everyone a chance to say what’s important to them. It helps people understand what the future might hold and to say what treatment they would and would not want.

This makes it much easier for families and healthcare providers to know what the person would want, particularly if they can no longer speak for themselves.

Southern DHB Palliative Care Clinical Nurse Specialist and Chair of the Southern DHBs Advanced Care Planning working group, Helen Sawyer, says ACP can be daunting for both health care providers, and patients and their families. This year’s theme for the National Conversations that Count Day is “get them talking”, which makes starting the process of thinking, talking about, and documenting more understandable. The main message is that ACP is about the conversations with each other being the most important part of the process.

This year there will be static stands at Dunedin, Wakari and Southland Hospitals for staff and members of the public to get information about ACP. Awareness on Conversations that Count Day will be displayed through TV screens in the foyer at Dunedin Hospital, on social media and on the staff intranet.

A set of online and printed postcards are also available to help encourage New Zealanders to have a “Conversation that Counts” with their friends and families on this important matter. www.conversationsthatcount.org.nz

For more information about advanced care planning go to www.advancecareplanning.co.nz or talk to your health professional.

Advanced Care Planning Checklist
Understand any health condition(s) you have and how these may progress.
Discuss these with your health care provider, including treatment options.
Think about what you would like and what is important.
Share your wishes with family and whānau.
Nominate someone to speak for you when you can’t and consider an enduring power of attorney.
Write a will with directions for legacies or gifts.
Keep a file of important papers and documents.
Leave funeral plans if you have a view about this (including pre-paying).
Complete your advance care plan.

ENDS

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