Promoting Advance Care Planning Through the National Healthcare Decisions Day Initiative

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advance directives, death and dying, end-of-life care, living will


National Healthcare Decisions Day is a nationwide campaign aimed at increasing advance care planning among adults throughout the country. This broad-scale initiative simultaneously seeks to encourage Americans to express their wishes regarding future healthcare decision making, rally a national media campaign to promote the importance of planning in advance for care, and mobilize national, state, and community organizations to develop a wide range of educational activities. The movement culminates in an annual day of multiple events throughout the country designed to inundate the public about advance care planning. The national event originated from the successful statewide Virginia Advance Directives Day's inaugural event, conducted on April 18, 2006. Social workers are encouraged to participate in this growing initiative through a variety of activities and roles. A description of a successful event conducted in a suburban Southeastern community is provided to illustrate the activities and roles performed by social work.

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Journal of Social Work in End-of-Life & Palliative Care, v. 6, issue 1-2, p. 11-26

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