No one can predict when a sudden illness or accident may occur, leaving a person unable to make personal healthcare decisions. Currently, far too many people enter the last stage of life without ever having a conversation about their preferences for end-of-life care, documenting those preferences, and informing loved ones or a patient advocate of their desires. Without a reliable, documented plan (advance directive), when a person cannot speak for himself the health system’s default is to provide every treatment available to extend life. When a patient’s wishes for care are known and have been honored, surviving family members experience significantly less anxiety, stress and depression. Thus, making your health care choices known is a gift that gives beyond one’s death.
Making Choices Michigan, established in 2010, is a 501(c)(3) registered non-profit, community collaborative committed to helping people determine their end-of-life preferences, documenting those preferences in an advance directive (AD), developing a system for storing and retrieving the AD, and educating the healthcare community to honor a person’s AD to ensure that end-of-life preferences are respected.
Creating a community culture where it is acceptable to talk about health care choices, including end of life, and to respect and honor those choices.
Encouraging and facilitating advance health care planning by the people of West Michigan.