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Advance care planning events offered throughout eastern North Carolina National Healthcare Decisions Day set for April 16

April 15, 2015 by Beth Anne Atkins

GREENVILLE – Vidant Health and community organizations throughout eastern North Carolina are working together to encourage all adults to discuss end-of-life goals and complete an advance directive.

For Vidant Health, providing high-quality, compassionate care for people who are nearing the end of life is a matter of professional commitment and responsibility. The organization strives to know what matters most to our patients, so that care can be best aligned with patients’ preferences. 

“Far too often we care for patients in crisis who can’t communicate for themselves and families are faced with making decisions without knowing what their loved one would have wanted,” said Scottie Gaskins, senior administrator, Health Access at Vidant Health. “Our goal is for all adults to complete an advance directive, while they are well, long before a crisis, and to openly discuss their preferences with their loved ones and health care providers.” 

Vidant Health is committed to providing education, tools and support to the public and to health care providers to document and openly discuss health care preferences for end of life care. The health system has launched a new Advance Care Planning Outreach Program that includes:
• Three outreach coordinators dedicated to advance care planning in Vidant Health communities.
• Free advance care planning events with trained facilitators to assist the public with the completion of advance directives. 
• Capture of advance directives in the Vidant Electronic Health Record.
• Support for other organizations working to promote advance care planning.
• New web pages with advance care planning tools and resources.

April 16 is designated as National Healthcare Decisions Day (NHDD). Many events are being offered throughout eastern North Carolina during the course of the year. The events will provide information and tools for the public to talk about their wishes with family, friends and health care providers, and help execute written advance directives including health care power of attorney and living will. Find an event near you at VidantHealth.com/Events. 
For more information about National Healthcare Decision Day, please visit www.nationalhealthcaredecisionsday.org.
UPCOMING EVENTS

4/18/15 – Vidant Health is partnering with the Community Care of Eastern Carolina and the Coastal Coalition for End of Life Awareness on a community initiative across North Carolina to offer an Advance Care Planning Clinics This event will be held from 9 a.m. – noon in Jones County at the Trenton United Methodist Church, 107 Market St., Trenton. There will be trained facilitators, Notary and witness services at no charge for those who are prepared to complete documents. Photo ID will be required for completion of documents.

4/22/15 - Vidant Chowan Hospital and Community Care Plan of Eastern Carolina are co-promoting an Advance Care Planning Clinic Wednesday, April 22, from 2-5 p.m. The clinic will include a panel discussion and the assistance of trained volunteers to help with completion of documents. The site hospital classroom, Virginia Rd., Edenton. For registration or for any additional information please contact Ginger Griffin, 252.482.6429 or via email at ginger.griffin@vidanthealth,com. Photo ID will be required for completion of documents.

4/24/15 – Special guest lecture “Supporting Ourselves and Each Other During the Grieving Process” presented by E. Alessandra Strada, PhD, FT, MSCP. The event will be Friday, April 24, 10-11 a.m. at the Pitt County Council on Aging, 4551 Country Home Rd., Greenville. This is an educational program, free and open to the public. This is sponsored by End of Life Coalition of Eastern Carolina and funded by the Vidant Health Community Benefit Grant program.
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