Midweek Motivator: Got plans for your advanced care directive?

Crow Wing Energized, Cuyuna Regional Medical Center to host events to help people with health care decisions.

A graphic on advanced care directives.
Contributed / Crow Wing Energized

BRAINERD — Crow Wing Energized is highlighting the importance of advance care planning in order to support end-of-life wishes.

This effort culminated in the formal designation of April 16 as National Healthcare Decisions Day. A health care directive, or advanced care directive, is an important document to complete prior to an illness or life-threatening injury. People are advised to dedicate time to have meaningful conversations with loved ones.

Crow Wing Energized is sponsoring the sixth annual Got Plans? conference 9 a.m.-noon April 14 at the Lutheran Church of the Cross in Nisswa. Doors open at 8:30 a.m.

It’s a discussion that should take place in the living room, not the hospital waiting room when it may be too late.
Karilee Pietz, CRMC Social Worker

Lucas Spaeth, an attorney who specializes in estate and elder law, will be the keynote speaker. He will talk about the importance of completing health care directive documents and will be available to answer any questions. He will discuss what a power of attorney versus what a health care agent is. An educational skit will be performed by Pro-Medica. Those attending will be able to meet with a specialist to complete the form. Lunch will be served; registration is required. Registration at .

Cuyuna Regional Medical Center will have staff available and advance directive forms at CRMC’s main entrance lobby from 10 a.m.-2 p.m. April 11 and April 12 in Crosby. CRMC’s facilitators will answer questions and discuss how to start the discussion with those close to you, determining wishes for end-of-life care and who you want to make medical decisions. No appointment is necessary.


“It’s understandable that people would put off discussing the topic of serious illness and death, but it’s essential to have this family conversation in advance,” said CRMC Social Worker Karilee Pietz in a news release. “It’s a discussion that should take place in the living room, not the hospital waiting room when it may be too late.”

Download and print copies of Honoring Choices at .

Essentia Health offers advance care planning on-line. The next class will be noon-1 p.m. on Tuesday, April 11. To register in advance for the webinar go to

“Advance care planning is not simply filling out an advance care directive. ACP is a process across time of understanding, reflecting on and discussing future medical decision, including end of life decisions. ACP is the best way we at Essentia have found to understand the goals, values, and beliefs of an individual and incorporate what matters most to each person into the care they receive” says Wanda Paulsen, RN Advance Care Planning Program Manager.

Further resources can be found by contacting:

For more information about National Healthcare Decision Day, visit www.nhdd .org.

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