December 21, 2015 -
Advance Care Planning Program Tailored to Improve End-of-Life Care
PORT ANGELES – Olympic Medical Center was selected to participate in the first cohort to implement Honoring Choices Pacific Northwest, a program to facilitate conversations about advance care planning. The program includes guidance and tools to discuss and plan for a person’s future health care decisions so those wishes will be honored.
"One of the most important conversations you can have with your health care provider and family is about what kind of care you want if you should become critically ill or are unable to speak for yourself,” says Lorraine Wall, RN, chief nursing officer, Olympic Medical. "We want to make sure our patients are cared for in the way that they want, but that can be difficult if patients and physicians haven’t made time to discuss the topic. Our goal with this planning program is to make that conversation easier, so patients can receive care that is consistent with their personal goals and values.”
Honoring Choices Pacific Northwest provides resources for the public about how to have these conversations with health care providers and loved ones, as well as how to plan for end-of-life care.
"Too often, we witness children struggling to guess and agree on what their ailing parent would want,” says Wall. "And as providers who instinctually want to heal patients and help them carry on, it can be difficult to lead children through these decisions. If we learn how to navigate these issues, we can improve the lives of both patients and families, while honoring patient wishes.”
Olympic Medical was selected to be in the first group or organizations that will receive training and consulting. Olympic Medical will integrate this advance care planning program throughout the local medical system. Honoring Choices Pacific Northwest utilizes Gundersen Health’s Respecting Choices® First Steps® curriculum, an internationally recognized program in advance care planning that is used in more than 120 medical systems across the country and around the globe.
Visit HonoringChoicesPNW.org for more information.
Honoring Choices Pacific Northwest is an initiative of the Washington State Hospital Association and the Washington State Medical Association with the goal to promote advance care planning by increasing awareness and providing training and resources. The inaugural Honoring Choices Pacific Northwest cohort launched in October.
Olympic Medical Center (Clallam County Public Hospital District No. 2) is a comprehensive, award-winning health care provider for more than 70,000 residents of Clallam County. It has served the community since its establishment on Nov. 1, 1951, and is governed by a seven-member, publicly elected board. Olympic Medical is a sole community hospital and rural referral center, and a charter member of both the Seattle Cancer Care Alliance (2003) and the Swedish Health Network (2011). Olympic Medical provides inpatient services at its 80-bed acute-care facility in Port Angeles, including a level-three trauma designated emergency department, surgical services, and labor and delivery. OMC’s outpatient services include cardiac, imaging, physical therapy and rehabilitation, laboratory, sleep medicine, surgical services, home health, physician clinics and comprehensive regional cancer care at locations in Port Angeles and Sequim.