April 2022 Is South Carolina Health Care Decisions Month
Governor McMaster has proclaimed April as South Carolina Health Care Decisions Month! This is an initiative designed to raise public awareness of the need to plan for future health care decisions, especially those related to end-of-life care and medical decision making when individuals are unable to speak for themselves, and to encourage advance care planning (ACP) to communicate those important decisions to loved ones and health care providers.
Although most people recognize the importance of ACP, very few have taken the steps to communicate and document their future health care wishes. Furthermore, ACP is more than a document, such as a Health Care Power of Attorney; it is a process that individuals should repeat periodically throughout their lives.
SCHA is encouraging statewide participation in National Healthcare Decisions Day (NHDD) on April 16, 2022, which focuses on inspiring, educating, and empowering the public and health care providers about the importance of advance care planning.
In South Carolina, however, the governor has proclaimed the entire month of April as South Carolina Healthcare Decisions Month, as this work should not be limited to one day. This approach provides flexibility for our stakeholders to develop and implement several activities, both large and small.
During the month of April all healthcare workers and the public are encouraged to focus on advance care planning regarding your healthcare choices should there be a time when you cannot speak for yourself. April is a time for activities to inspire, educate, and empower all South Carolinians to:
- Think about what is important to you if you cannot speak for yourself,
- Talk about your choices with your loved ones and healthcare providers,
- Write your wishes down, and
- Repeat this process periodically throughout your life.
Examine and talk about what is important to you at all stages of your life, whether you are young and healthy, or if you are facing health care issues that impact, or may impact, your health status. Share your decisions with your loved ones and health care team. More information on what you can do to celebrate Health Care Decisions Month is available here.