End of life decisions are beginning to take on a new meaning as one person in particular, Barbara Karnes, leads the community into taking back this time and no longer thinking of it as a “medical issue.”
Making End of Life Decisions
Barbara Karnes introduces us to the idea of making our end of life decisions, whether ourselves or as a family unit, together as a community. Knowing some of these key points about the end of life can help a family in making decisions:
- This is not a medical problem. – While end of life commonly entails medical issues, this is not a medical “problem” but a social or communal moment and should be treated as such.
- Everyone faces end of life. – Every single one of us faces “end of life”; thereby, making this a social experience first and foremost.
- Individuality – Even though everyone faces their end of life moment, everyone is different and should be treated as an individual, not as something out of a text book scenario. This is what Above and Beyond feels is very important in our approach to end of life care and makes us stand out among our peers.
- Allowing families to understand and know that it’s okay. – A quarter of a century ago you would have never been able to find information on end of life decisions and help; while Barbara Karnes brings this to the forefront for this generation. What better time to become more aware of the help that is out there for end of life moments but as the baby boomers are aging and many are facing end of life decisions?
- New Rules – Because we are looking at end of life differently we are focusing on new “rules” and expectations that deal with each person as an individual; allowing for certain expected standards when it comes to care.
- The Process – There is a process that is considered to be the normal, natural process of facing the end of human life that is very typical among us. This process is to be expected and dealt with on an individual basis.
- Pain – There is pain in a disease that ends life and most possibly in a life in which pain was an everyday part; however, the process of death in and of itself does not necessarily involve pain. As a person’s body shuts down for end of life it disassociates itself in many ways, including in how it feels pain, making the end of life less painful than most of us assume it is.
End of life care is an area that Above and Beyond can offer an expert line of care and we encourage you to call us if you are facing end of life decisions.
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