How fast the changes have come these past few weeks regarding the Medicare provision to reimburse doctors who discuss the options for how patients want to be treated in their final days. The New York Times story on December 26 announced a Medicare provision to encourage end-of-life conversations during annual physical exams being instituted by regulation January 1. Then a “death panel” hue-and-cry erupted, crying foul since the provision had been dropped from the 2010 Affordable Care Act … [Read more...] about Medicare End-of-Life Counseling Disappears Again
At Elizabeth Edwards’ funeral, Glenn Bergenfield, a close family friend who presented a eulogy, said that in her final days, as he looked around the Edwards household for any guidance she had regarding funeral arrangements, he found none. Since she was such a detailed planner, he thought surely she would have left copious notes. Bergenfield said, “As the week has worn on I have begun to think she saw the sad and beautiful metaphor: We must go on ourselves.” Edwards did make plans for her … [Read more...] about Thoughts On Conveying Funeral Plans To Your Family
Maybe you don’t care what people will do to honor you after your death. After all, you won’t be around to enjoy the party. But the people who love you care deeply. My friend Gary, a confirmed bachelor in his sixties with no immediate family in the area, says that he doesn’t want a funeral when he dies. To his way of thinking, he’s not religious, doesn’t like ceremonies or rituals, and wouldn’t want people to make a fuss. But so many of his friends will miss him and his generosity, warm wit, … [Read more...] about Why Have a Funeral or Memorial Service?
Death is a very real part of life, along with taxes. Yet, funerals are the only life cycle event most folks don’t want to plan in advance. Despite the fact that humans have a 100 percent mortality rate, we don’t expect to die. If you don’t expect to die, you’re unlikely to preplan a funeral. And that leads to problems like family discord, higher costs, rote rituals devoid of meaning, and unnecessary stress added to grief. Wedding planning gets way more attention than funeral planning, even … [Read more...] about Over My Dead Body: Why Fear Funeral Planning?