End-of-Life Planning is Crucial for Peace-of-Mind

Ensure that your wishes are documented.
May 2, 2024
Elaine Jones, Chief Financial Officer
End-of-Life Planning is Crucial for Peace-of-Mind

End-of-life planning is critical, but many people fail to make their wishes known. Leaving loved ones with no direction on how you wish to be cared for at the end of life is something we see often. Our social work team helps facilitate end-of-life planning, including making decisions regarding health care preferences, financial matters, charitable bequests and personal wishes for when our patients near the end of their lives. While contemplating mortality may be uncomfortable, engaging in end-of-life planning can reduce stress, ensure dignity, and provide peace-of-mind.

End-of-life planning is essential to ensure that one’s wishes are known and respected. By documenting preferences for medical treatment, including resuscitation, life-sustaining measures and symptom management, you can maintain autonomy over your health care decisions even when you are no longer able to communicate them. Advance directives such as living wills and health care proxies empower people to appoint trusted individuals to make medical decisions on their behalf, reflecting their values and preferences.

Moreover, end-of-life planning extends beyond health care to encompass financial and legal matters. Creating a will or establishing a trust allows you to dictate how your assets and belongings will be distributed after your passing, minimizing confusion and potential conflicts among family members. Additionally, designating beneficiaries for retirement accounts, life insurance policies, and other assets streamlines the inheritance process and ensures that loved ones are provided for. In addition, financial planning ensures the causes and charities you’ve supported will receive any bequests.

Another critical aspect of end-of-life planning is preparing for the practicalities of death. Expressing preferences regarding funeral or memorial services, burial or cremation, and other funeral arrangements relieves loved ones of the burden of making these decisions. Likewise, expressing intentions regarding organ and tissue donation can potentially save lives and contribute to the well-being of others even after death.

End-of-life planning also eases important discussions among family members and loved ones. Conversations about end-of-life preferences can foster understanding, empathy and emotional support within families. Open communication can help alleviate the burden of decision-making during times of crisis and ensure that everyone is on the same page. 

By documenting these preferences, you can maintain autonomy, provide clarity for loved ones, and ensure dignity and peace-of-mind as you approach the end of your life.  

Stillwater Hospice

Phone: (260) 435-3222

Website: stillwater-hospice.org

Email: elainejones@stillwater-hospice.org

Lake City Bank - Face to Face

Related Stories