Planning for the future

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Having a plan in case of an emergency or end-of-life situations is extremely important, health experts say, and Hospice of Saint John is taking a day to help inform people about the choices they have to make.

From 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Tuesday, April 16 - which coincides with the Annual Healthcare Decisions Day - Saint John, 1320 Everett Court, will host a community education day and on hand will be representatives from organizations who handle these kinds of issues.

“This is not just a day for older folks, but also for people who have a family and need to take care,” said Cammie Rausch, director of education and compliance at Saint John. “We do this a lot at our hospice. We see a lot of people who don’t have their affairs in order, and then others have to make decisions, and it can cause some family strife.”

Kristi Ross, who also works at Saint John, said not making these decisions can be really hard on families when they’re already dealing with a lot. Rausch said that many people don’t know where to go for information about the plans that need to be made, or they don’t have the funds to pay for an attorney to walk them through the process, so this free event is a great way to get information. People who stop by will have a chance to work on “five wishes” a document that gives all kinds of information to loved ones, including financial and funeral arrangements. Horan and McConaty will be there to discuss funeral or cremation arrangements.

Representatives from Right at Home, an in-home senior-care company, and Golden Wealth Solutions. which deals with retirement financial planning, will also attend to answer questions. Groves Elder Estate Law also will be represented.

“We really wanted to try to get all levels, so we have group homes there and people who can answer legal questions,” Ross said.

Ross said it’s going to be an amazing event that will help dispel any misinformation people may have received, and give them a head start on making plans. It will also help make this kind of planning less scary.

“You never know what’s going to happen, and so it’s always good to be proactive,” Rausch said. “That way you can just deal with living and not the headache of getting all this in order.”

For more information, call 303-232-7900 or go online to www.hospiceofsaintjohn.org.

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