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Planning Ahead Checklist

  • Get the information you need to make informed choices about end-of-life care.
  • Get to know end-of-life care services that are available to you such as hospice and palliative care providers by going to the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization's website.
  • Discuss your thoughts, concerns and choices with your loved ones.
  • Talk to your doctor about different treatments.
  • Establish advance directives (a living will and medical power of attorney) for your state.
  • Talk to your healthcare agent, family and doctor about your choices.
  • Discuss your choices often, especially when your medical condition changes.
  • Keep your completed advance directives in an accessible place.
  • Give photocopies of the signed originals to your healthcare agent, alternate agents, doctor, family, friends, clergy and anyone else who might be involved in your healthcare.
  • Assess your financial situation, create a financial inventory and determine what end-of-life goals you want to accomplish that involve money.
  • Learn about the cost of end-of-life care, how medical bills and expenses will be paid for if you are not able to.
  • Make financial decisions such as how you want to give your money and possessions to others upon your death.
  • Prepare for the time when you cannot handle money matters; appoint a durable power of attorney.
  • Plan your funeral/memorial service.

National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization, www.nhpco.org

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