There comes a time when we have to prepare for the death of a loved one. It is much easier to focus on life and living, but we remain mortal and end of life planning is necessary to avoid unpleasant outcomes. An online discussion on wealthmangement.com provided some important tips for a “to-do” list. First, know the difference between hospice and palliative care. Both offer pain management and end of life care in the home or a specialized facility with a team of trained specialists. There are a few differences. With hospice care, doctors must agree that the patient is near death—typically within six months and life sustaining treatment is stopped. Palliative care can start at any time, and pain and symptom management are provided in addition to life prolonging treatment. Next, make sure all necessary legal documents are in order, to include health care directives, a living will and compliance with the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act. Talk with your loved one and be sure you know what their wishes are while they have the mental competence to make decisions. Let him/her be in control of their death decisions and be aware of what those decisions mean to them. Make sure you know when your loved one wants end of life care to begin and treatment to stop. Once decided, know what potential care facilities are available and do the proper research to ensure a good fit. Make sure they deliver on what they promise and have a proven reputation for quality care.
It may be that in-home care is a better choice because of individual and specialized attention, a familiar environment and the ability to spend unrestricted time with family and friends. The downside is the stress and strain on family members to provide care, the chance that an emergency will arise, and help will not arrive in time and the memories that remain after death of the loved one. Facility care provides around-the-clock coverage, attention to medication and pain relief measures, and allowance of a more normal routine for family members, with less physical stress. The downside is the question of quality of care, cost, unfamiliar setting for the family member and less contact with family. None of this is going to be easy. Death is inevitable, but when it was someone else who was dying, it may have been painful, but it was on someone else’s plate. Now it has come home and it is important for all parties concerned to come to grips with the reality of loss and how to mitigate some of the pain. Counseling is available if needed. Keep your legal, tax and financial advisors in the loop so that they have the opportunity to review all important documents for possible updates or changes while it is possible to make corrections. Include your prayer partners for help. Don’t underestimate the power of prayer. Do what you need to do and do it well so that you will be at peace when that final day comes.
Mother’s Day is celebrated in May and Dierks Bentley has a new song that I think is appropriate and applicable for this occasion. Here are bits and pieces of “Woman, Amen”. “Every night I should be on my knees; Lord knows how lucky I am. I’ll never say it near enough, thank God for this woman, amen. She gives me faith, she gives me grace, she gives me hope, she gives me strength, she gives me love, love without end. Thank God for this woman, amen. Thanks for the moon and the stars up above, forgiveness of sin and your undying love. Every twist, every turn for the way you made sure all my roads led to her. So tonight, I will fall down on my knees, cause Lord knows how lucky I am. I’m going to shout at the top of my lungs: thank God for this woman, amen!” Couldn’t have said it better myself. Hope all you mothers have a great day and especially, Beverly, thank you for all the love you share with your children and me. I am truly blessed.
Although this information has been gathered from sources believed to be reliable, it cannot be guaranteed. This material is intended for informational purposes only and should not be construed or acted upon as individualized tax, legal or investment advice. FSC Securities Corporation does not offer tax or legal advice. The views expressed are not necessarily the opinion of FSC Securities Corporation. Financial Solutions Group is a marketing name. Financial Solutions Group is located at 128 Versailles Blvd, Alexandria, LA 71301. We can be reached at (318) 448-3201. Securities, insurance and advisory services offered through FSC Securities Corporation, member FINRA/SIPC.