National Healthcare Decisions Day set for April 12

Published 3:08 pm Tuesday, April 5, 2011

St. Luke’s Hospital and Hospice of the Carolina Foothills, along with other national, state and community organizations, are leading a massive effort to highlight the importance of advance healthcare decision-making – an effort that has culminated in the formal designation National Healthcare Decisions Day (NHDD).

As participating organizations, St. Luke’s and Hospice are providing information and tools for the public to talk about their wishes with family, friends and healthcare providers, and execute written advance directives (healthcare power of attorney and living will) in accordance with North Carolina state laws. These resources are available at or

Specifically, on April 12 at 10:30 a.m., St. Luke’s and Hospice will be welcoming the public with “Coffee and Conversation: A Discussion About End of Life Issues.” The program will be held at Isothermal Community College, Columbus campus, with free information about advance care planning and advance directive forms.

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Dr. Andrew Kamell, attorney Ed Harrelson and Chaplain Dr. Bob Lair, along with social worker Meg Hoke, will lead a discussion on advance care planning and why you should make your future healthcare decisions known to family, friends and healthcare providers. There will also be staff there to assist in completing the forms.

“Coffee and Conversation: A Discussion About End of Life Issues” will be held again at 6 p.m. at the Inman Public Library in Inman, S.C. Attorney David Ingalls will join the panel here.

“As a result of National Healthcare Decisions Day, many more people in our community can be expected to have thoughtful conversations about their healthcare decisions and complete reliable advance directives to make their wishes known,” said Dr. Bob Lair, St. Luke’s Hospital Chaplain and panel discussion member. “Fewer families and healthcare providers will have to struggle with making difficult healthcare decisions in the absence of guidance from the patient, and healthcare providers and facilities will be better equipped to address advance healthcare planning issues before a crisis and be better able to honor patient wishes when the time comes to do so.”

To make a reservation or for more information about National Healthcare Decisions Day, call 828-894-7000 or 828-894-2408.