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Making End-of-life Conversations Easier

Posted on 06/17/2013

ThisGivesMeHope.com: My partner and I are nearer the end of our life than the beginning. We have talked about our wishes, but The Conversation Project reminds me we still have a lot of loose ends to tie up.

The Conversation Project is a collaboration with the Institute for Healthcare Improvement. It grew out of Ellen Goodman’s harrowing experience of her mother’s dementia and death. She was unprepared for the decisions she had to make as her mother’s mental and physical health declined. In a piece for Second Journey, she wrote:

That’s why I started gathering with a group of colleagues and friends — doctors, care providers, clergy, and media — to share stories from our personal experiences of “good deaths” and “bad deaths” we had witnessed with loved ones. We talked about being faced with a cascading and confusing number of medical decisions and an uncertainty about the wishes of our parents, spouses, and friends.

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