Hospital Resources Available to Assist Patients with End-of-Life Care Planning
HAP is an advocate for coordinated end-of-life care planning. This part of the health care process should not be dealt
with separately from other health care delivery issues.
Consumers need to have
candid discussions with their families and health care providers well before a
medical crisis occurs. These conversations build trust and understanding
between all parties. They lead to clarity about how an individual wishes to
receive care if they become terminally ill or experience a serious medical
HAP and its member organizations are working together to help
patients understand their options and define their preference for quality and
peace of mind at the end-of-life care with a variety of resources, including:
A legal document
that goes into effect only if a patient is incapacitated and unable
to speak for themselves. It helps others to know what type of medical and/or
mental health care the patient wants, as well as their values and desires
related to end-of-life care. It often consists of a living will and health care
power of attorney.
Mental Health Advance Directive
A legal document
that goes into effect only if a patient’s mental illness makes them incapable
of making mental health decisions. It helps others to know what type of mental
health care the patient wants, as well as their values and desires related to
end-of-life care. It often consists of a mental health care advance directive
and mental health care power of attorney.
Pennsylvania Orders for Life-Sustaining Treatment (POLST)
A tool used by the medical team through conversation with a
patient and/or family to summarize a patient’s treatment choices in the form of
written medical orders about treatment goals for end-of-life care.
designed to be used across health care settings, so that the wishes of the
patient can be carried out in any setting, from hospital, to nursing home, to
home health, or hospice care.
POLST differs from an advance directive (living
will or health care power of attorney) in that it is an actionable medical
order dealing with the here-and-now needs of patients—it builds on an advance
directive, but can be created for patients without an advance directive.
in partnership with the Pennsylvania Department of Health, the Center for Organ Recovery and Education, and Gift of Life Donor Program, supports the “Pennsylvania Donate Life Hospital Challenge,” which seeks to raise donor awareness, clarify
common myths, and increase the number of donors in the commonwealth.
that more than 8,300 Pennsylvanians await organ transplants and thousands of
others await tissue transplants, HAP recommends incorporating organ donation
into your advanced care planning.