News Center

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Advance health-care directives make patients’ medical decisions known

INDIANAPOLIS – Who do you want to speak for you and make health-care decisions when you are unable to do so?

Advance health-care directives instructions are given by individuals specifying what actions should be taken for their health in the event that they are no longer able to make decisions due to illness or incapacity.

That’s why Franciscan St. Francis Health and St. Francis Hospice are helping lead and coordinate efforts to educate the public about the importance of having advance health-care directives.

On Friday, April 15, information stations will be set up at St. Francis hospitals in Indianapolis, Beech Grove and Mooresville. Hospice staff will be joined by St. Francis nurses, social workers, chaplains and attorneys specializing in health care law. Other experts from outside the hospital will be on hand to answer questions.

Among the other events the hospital and St. Francis will participate in: Indianapolis Monument Circle – 11 a.m.-1:30 p.m., Friday, April 15; and Komen Race for the Cure Health Fair, Military Park – 7 a.m.-11 a.m., Saturday, April 16.

The events coincide with the National Health Care Decisions Day, designed to raise awareness about the importance of advance care planning.

The simple act of creating an advance directive can turn out to be an incredible gift for loved ones in the event of an accident or severe illness,” said Monica Burkhart-Negri, R.N., community liaison for St. Francis Hospice. “Such directives do not go into effect until a person is no longer able to make decisions.”