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PRESS RELEASE / ANNOUNCEMENTS Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Alliance Invites Public to Consider Advance Care Planning Conversations at “Get It Done Today!”

Free community-wide event on National Healthcare Decisions Day encourages public to complete Advance Health Care Directives

Santa Barbara, CA (April 2015) – As part of their ongoing work to foster advance care planning conversations in the community, the Alliance for Living and Dying Well is pleased to announce their third annual Get It Done Today! event on Thursday April 16th, in conjunction with National Healthcare Decisions Day. Get It Done Today! is a FREE community-wide event to encourage the public to complete Advance Health Care Directives. The event will take place at the Santa Barbara Public Library’s Faulkner Gallery, from 10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.

Completing an Advance Health Care Document (AHCD) through facilitated conversations with loved ones and health care agents is integral to ensuring that your health care preferences and values are known and honored when you cannot speak for yourself. Currently, in Santa Barbara County, only 10% of patients arrive at Cottage Hospital with a completed and accessible AHCD. Get It Done Today! is an opportunity for anyone in the community to come and begin the conversation, learn more about the process or take the initiative to complete his/her AHCD.

“Maybe you haven’t found the right time to have this important conversation,” said Susan Plummer, Executive Director of the Alliance for Living and Dying Well. “Or perhaps you’ve begun conversations with your loved ones about your wishes, but have not yet completed your directive. No matter where you are in the process the Alliance is here to help you.”

Cottage Hospital, a member of the Alliance and important community partner, provides free electronic scanning of AHCD documents into one’s medical record where they remain on file and easily accessible to medical and healthcare providers when needed. This important service not only improves accessibility of the individual’s AHCD by medical and healthcare providers, but also supports the Alliance’s mission of ensuring AHCDs are available and accessible when they are most critically needed.

The Alliance will have professional facilitators, notaries, and trained volunteers - both English and Spanish speaking - onsite at the Get It Done Today! event to facilitate the process of completing advance health care directives. Appointments are required, so call now to reserve (805) 845-5314. The Alliance is also seeking volunteers to be trained to assist with GIDT. Call (805) 845-5314 or email catherine@allianceforlivinganddyingwell.org to volunteer.

The Alliance for Living and Dying Well is a collaboration of Santa Barbara area agencies that seeks a seamless, compassionate continuum of end-of-life care. The Alliance fosters learning and healing through discussions of our mortality, and it promotes practical planning, such as advance health care directives. For information, please call 805-845-5314 or visit www.AllianceforLivingandDyingWell.org.

Contact

Jennifer ZACHARIAS, (805) 845-4068

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