Make your health care wishes known in Colorado
Life can be unpredictable. If you ever need someone to make health care decisions on your behalf, it would be helpful to have that person picked out and ready to step in when needed. Kaiser Permanente’s Life Care Planning program can help you not only choose that person but also decide what you’ll want if you’re ever unable to speak for yourself.
Life Care Planning for your peace of mind
Life Care Planning is the process of considering, developing, and completing an advance directive, which:
- Outlines the health care decisions you’d want made if you should ever be unable to speak for yourself
- Appoints a person to communicate these wishes on your behalf
An advance directive includes:
- Your designated health care agent (decision-maker)
- Your preferences when it comes to life-sustaining treatment(s)
- Your values regarding life and what makes it worth living
- Religious affiliation, if applicable
- A declaration of organ donor status, if applicable
The value of an advance directive
If you’re ever unable to communicate your health care wishes, an advance directive will make things clear for your loved ones.
“Unless you’ve thought through what you want and wouldn’t want — and have had meaningful conversations with your loved ones — you leave the ones who would make decisions for you in a bind,” says Tracy Ellen Lippard, MD, clinical lead for complex care at Kaiser Permanente’s Care Management Institute.
“Without a Life Care Plan guiding them,” says Daniel Johnson, MD, a physician lead for palliative care at the institute, “Families can be left with guilt no matter what their decisions were. They feel guilt if they continue treatment and guilt if they stop treatment.”
Life Care Planning can help you make sure your loved ones won’t have to wonder.
How to get started
Kaiser Permanente now offers an online resource to help you start Life Care Planning. At kp.org/lifecareplan, you’ll find videos and step-by-step guides to help you complete your advance directive. If you’d like more support, this site can help you find classes at a Kaiser Permanente location in your area.
Take the time to think through your options and begin your personalized plan. Visit kp.org/lifecareplan.
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