National Healthcare Decisions Day: Take charge of end-of-life planning

healthcare decisionsDo you have a plan in place for end-of-life decisions? Does your family know your wishes in case you face a life-threatening illness? You’ll have a chance to talk about those issues in Edmonds and Lynnwood on April 16, when organizations in Snohomish County join others across the state and nationally to recognize National Healthcare Decisions Day.

You’ll receive information and tools to communicate your wishes to family, friends and health care providers, and prepare written advance directives (health care power of attorney and living wills) in accordance with state laws.

The day will kick off with an advance care planning clinic takes place in the morning at Swedish Medical Center-Edmonds; and ends with a community event at Trinity Lutheran in Lynnwood. Additional events and community events are scheduled in the days and weeks that follow. In early May the YMCA of Snohomish County is offering classes in Marysville and Mukilteo, and more events and course options are occurring countywide (more information at www.snocoheath.org/palliative-care).

“Too often our values and priorities may not be reflected in health care we receive — particularly at the end of life,” said Scott Forslund, director of the Snohomish County Health Leadership Coalition, a collaboration of medical and community partners. “This is too important to be left to the health-care system alone. You are the only person who can decide what is right for you.”

For more information about National Healthcare Decision Day, visit www.nationalhealthcaredecisionsday.org.

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