Saturday, November 30, 2019

Prepare for Your Care: A Free Resource for ACP

Photo by programwitch via Creative Commons.
Because I teach in the College of Nursing and Health Professions at the University of Southern Indiana, I have the opportunity of working with several experts. This semester, I was privileged to work with Dr. Kevin Valadares, an expert in medical ethics and hospital administration.

Under Dr. Valadares' direction, I was able to participate in Advanced Care Planning (ACP) with my students (Health Care Continuum & Community Services). Sometimes people call ACP by other names, such as Living Will or Advanced Directive.

News report on ACP Grant

USI's description of this project

These are legal documents for establishing whether or not you want curative care or specific types of medical interventions such as CPR, a breathing tube, a feeding tube, or even antibiotics in the case of pneumonia or another infection.

Many people recoil from having such conversations. However, others have watched families struggle to determine how to respond to a serious medical problem suffered by a loved one who can no longer express his or her wishes.

Even a very young person can suffer a life-threatening injury or acute medical condition. While people of any age can live with a chronic illness, this is more prevalent among older adults. As a gerontologist, I have observed many people who have a chronic condition that takes a turn for the worse, rendering them incapable of articulated their wishes.

How Can You Learn about Advanced Care Planning? 

I recently went through the Prepare for Your Care resource. The Regents of the University of California host this site, but experts from a variety of universities, hospitals, and other organizations have helped prepare the information.

Saturday, November 2, 2019

2019 MAIA Review: Day Two

Highlights from MAIA on Friday, August 9, 2019.

I have a few notes that I haven't shared from the Twelfth Annual Mid-American Institute on Aging and Wellness (MAIA) held on the campus of University of Southern Indiana.

Attendees include members of the tristate region's healthcare organizations (including USI students, faculty, and staff member), family care partners (formerly called "caregivers"), and individuals of all ages from IN, KY, IL and beyond seeking to improve the quality of their life by learning more about wellness across the lifespan.

Many healthcare professionals attending earn CME credits (continuing medical education), but a good portion of those present are not healthcare professionals; they are community members who are pro-active about their physical, financial, social, and emotional health.

These are details about the second day of this event, which took place on Friday, August 9, 2019. Find details about the first day, Thursday August 8th, by following this link.

Ron Weatherford in USI's Carter Hall
As people made there way to Carter Hall, they had the opportunity to practice a few minutes of Tai Chi as directed by Ron Weatherford.

Published in 2014 and 2017.
The morning keynote address was delivered by journalist and author Greg O'Brien.

He gave an engaging speech about living with Younger-Onset Dementia. previously called Early Onset Dementia (EOD).

His work as a journalist gives him the ability to articulate a lot of emotions and concepts about living with this disease. His family heritage and personality gives him the ability to do so with a lot of wit and wisdom; he comes from a long line of animated storytellers.

For those seeking to learn more about O'Brien, he has a well-regarded book, On Pluto, which has been republished in 2017 in an expanded edition.