It’s not the easiest thing to talk about, but healthcare professionals across Milton Keynes want to get people talking more openly about dying, death and bereavement.
The call comes ahead of the launch of Dying Matters Awareness Week which starts on Monday.
Members of the public are being encouraged to take five simple steps to make their end of life experience better, both for them and for their loved ones.
Easy ways to make sure of this include writing a will, recording funeral wishes, registering as an organ donor, planning future care and support and talking to loved ones about their wishes.
“People feel anxious talking about dying because it can create fear and upset, but planning ahead can make those difficult decisions and conversations easier,” said Dr Nessan Carson, local GP and Board Member at NHS Milton Keynes Clinical Commissioning Group.
“When more planning is done in advance it means that care at the end of life is tailored to individual needs, less stressful and everyone involved knows what’s expected.
“This is why we are encouraging people to complete the Advance Care Plan.
“The earlier that people talk about their dying wishes, the easier it is emotionally and practically and people will get the death they wish for.
“It’s vital we talk and dying well is as important as living well. Thinking about all the things you want in advance, talking to your loved ones, writing it down and keeping it safe gives you some control at the end of life. “It can also comfort the bereaved to know everything was done the way their loved one would have wanted”.
To help get people talking healthcare professionals across Milton Keynes have designed a document called Planning your Care in Advance.
It can be downloaded from the NHS Milton Keynes Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG)’s website: http://www.miltonkeynesccg.nhs.uk/end-of-life-care-for-patients-in-mk/
For more information about the awareness week, visit www.dyingmatters.org