A few words about End With Care
June 27, 2017
In today's world of medicine, nursing and the allied health professions, end-of-life care refers to health care, not only of patients in the final hours or days of their lives, but more broadly care of all those with a terminal illness or terminal condition that has become advanced, progressive and incurable. As the population continues to age and medical advances progress rapidly, the final stages of life are becoming more important. One of the challenges facing health and social service providers is information, or more specifically, how can people get useful information? Many individuals and families face end-of-life crises without access to resources and support that could help. Within Massachusetts as in most states, there are services, care providers and support resources available to them. Yet many families have difficulty locating these or are not aware they exist. Often, the medical practitioners with whom they interact may not provide this information. As a result, critical decisions are often delayed or not made and the needs and wishes of the dying are not addressed.
In the 2015 report entitled "Dying in America", by the National Institute of Medicine, this problem was noted: "Need for public education and engagement about end-of-life care issues is manifest at the societal, community/family, and individual levels. Not only do most Americans lack knowledge about end-of-life care choices, but the health community and other leaders also have not fully utilized strategies to make that knowledge available, meaningful, and relevant across diverse population groups."
We are at an important crossroads as a culture in our philosophical, medical and practical approach to the end of life. Increasingly, we question the traditional approach to end of life i.e., to keep individuals in expensive institutional settings. Instead, there are alternatives that can improve the quality of the final days or weeks of life, for both the individual and family, and also provide a more responsible use of finite resources for society. End With Care will provide this link to vital services and emerging supports for families, caregivers and individuals with life-threatening conditions, arming them with access to resources and the information for making difficult decisions.
Our approach offers an easy-to-use and robust toolkit for finding care, through a system that is:
- Current and regularly updated
- Confidential and private
- Convenient, providing information under one well organized site
- User friendly
Today, with increasing attention being paid to the health care needs of our aging society and the ever-growing demographic segment of persons over the age of 80 years, it is more important than ever to provide this valuable resource.
In developing End With Care, we will bridge those in need with those who can help and provide a path to a more positive vision and a more dignified passage through the last days of life.
We welcome your reaction, feedback, questions, and suggestions for End With Care and for future blog topics. Please send any comments using our Contact page or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org