Northeast Florida Community Hospice

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It’s all about the conversation.

What is Advance Care Planning?

Patients often do not receive the care they want when faced with a serious or life-limiting illness. Advance Care Planning (ACP) means talking in advance about your health care wishes in the event you become ill and cannot speak for yourself. Ideally, your wishes should be put in writing and shared with your family, clergy, and health care providers. Documents, such as living wills and health care surrogate designations, are tools in this process. Making your wishes known and documented will help ensure health care providers, community support systems and family know and honor your wishes.

The benefits of ACP are far reaching and may be the greatest gift you can give your loved ones. Benefits include:

  • knowledge of and respect for your wishes,
  • continuity of care, and
  • reduced family and caregiver anxiety.

Ultimately, the outcome of ACP is the improved quality of life and quality of death. This comes from fully understanding your health care choices, making decisions based on your values, goals and beliefs, and communicating your wishes to health care providers, family and/or community support systems.  

Honoring Choices Florida—Florida’s advance care planning initiative

Honoring Choices Logo

Community Hospice is supporting and coordinating the Honoring Choices Florida ACP program. The program has started in Northeast Florida and will eventually spread throughout the state.

Community Hospice partnered with six Northeast Florida hospitals to bring the program to patients and families in the community. The program is now being put into practice in various non-hospital settings with the goal to continually spread to other community sites.

How does Honoring Choices Florida work?

The ACP process begins with a conversation with a specially trained "facilitator" about goals, values, beliefs and experiences in planning for future health care needs. Ideally, this conversation should occur when you are healthy. The result will be a well-informed plan that identifies your health care wishes in the event of a serious or life-limiting illness. 

If you choose to complete a written advance care plan without guidance from a facilitator, make sure you:

  • talk with your family and physicians about your wishes
  • inform your family whom you have chosen to be your surrogate decision maker
  • follow the directions carefully and have it witnessed according to the directions
  • give copies to your surrogate, family members, physicians and hospitals you use

We want to make sure your wishes are honored. We are here to help answer your questions or guide you through the conversation. For more information go to: www.HonoringChoicesFL.com or call 904.407.7024.

 

*It is the policy of Community Hospice to involve the patient and family in all health care decisions while in our hospice program. Community Hospice will not attempt to influence your decisions, nor promote a specific action; nor will Community Hospice take measures to either hasten or postpone death. Your may receive care from Community Hospice regardless of whether or not you have executed an advance care plan.

The information on advance care planning is provided as a courtesy and should not be relied upon as legal advice. There are statutory provisions that address and set forth specific requirements for advance directives that are not discussed in this general information. If you have specific questions regarding your health care or your legal rights and responsibilities, you should consult your health care provider and/or an attorney.