One of the many important services that the RVNAhealth ComfortWELL team delivers year-round is help and facilitation with Advance Care Planning – the process of guiding individuals to make plans about their future health care choices. An Advance Care Plan provides direction to healthcare professionals when a person is not in a position to make and/or communicate their own healthcare choices, and it enables family and friends to follow a loved one’s wishes without the burden of trying to figure out what they are.
“Advance Care Planning is a true gift to oneself and to one’s family,” says Keri Linardi, RN, BSN, PHN, CHPCA, Chief Clinical Officer at RVNAhealth. “It allows clarity in health care decision making prior to crises in health, and it gives families or decision makers one last opportunity to honor their loved ones wishes. A final gift to close the circle.”
“And, while we promote Advance Care Planning at all times,” Linardi continues, ”now – when you have time at home and when COVID-19 is so active in our communities – is a very good time to take care of this. Our team is here to help.”
Free Advance Care Planning Via Telehealth
RVNAhealth is now offering Advance Care Planning support to all community members – free of charge. The help will be conducted via telehealth methods (phone, FaceTime, WhatsApp and other video-conferencing methods as needed) and will include the facilitation of discussion on such topics as wishes for care, COVID-19-specific conditions; benefits vs. burdens of particular decisions and more. The consultations will be conducted by key members of the RVNAhealth ComfortWELL team including Kaye Hale, MD, Hospice Associate Medical Director; Cindy Merritt, LCSW, Hospice Social Worker; Jessica Lewis, LCSW, Hospice Social Worker or Niamh Van Mienes, APRN
“RVNAhealth is caring for a wide range of patients right now and our experiences are telling us clearly what is working and what needs attention,” says Linardi. “Our two ongoing recommendations for all patients and community members remain: practice all the recommended health measures including staying at home, social distancing, hand-washing; and take the time to prepare an advance care plan.”