NHS Wandsworth CCG – Talking about dying won’t make it happen!

Tomorrow the Digital Legacy Association will be participating at Wandsworth CCGs ‘Talking about dying won’t make it happen!’. We hope to see you there.

About the event

Date: Thursday 12 May
Time: 12pm – 2pm
At: Wandsworth CCG Offices, Meeting Room 4, 1st Floor, 73-75 Upper Richmond Road, London, SW15 2SR

The End of Life Care (EOLC) Clinical Reference Group warmly invites you to a “Drop-In” information event as part of Dying Matters Awareness Week.

Although death and dying isn’t the easiest of topics, the EOLC CRG members would like to offer you an opportunity to begin to “walk the walk” and “talk the talk” around some of the issues that the national Dying Matters campaign will be encouraging the wider public to address.  The campaign makes an important point:  “Talking about dying won’t make it happen” and the aim is to positively change attitudes and behaviour around talking about and planning for death.  Why should you give less time to planning for the end of your life than planning for a wedding or a birth?

Research released for Dying Matters Awareness Week in 2014 found that:

  • Just 36% of adults said they had made a will;
  • 29% had let someone know their funeral wishes;
  • 6% had written down wishes or preferences about the care they would want if they couldn’t make decisions;
  • 51% of people with a partner were unaware of their wishes.

By avoiding holding honest conversations, the opportunity to make plans for our future care is missed. We miss having the chance to say what care we would like to receive and what treatments we would not want to be given, particularly if a time came when we were no longer able to express our wishes for ourselves.

Many cases illustrate that even where a death is expected, the patients, their family and even their health care professionals are often unprepared for the final moments and this can have a significant adverse effect on the grieving of family and friends.   Patients don’t have a chance to put their affairs in order, make a will, say goodbyes, repair relationships, or make suggestions about how they would like to be remembered.

Many of us won’t have personally addressed these important issues.  We are hoping that our invitation will begin to support you in doing so.

The national Dying Matters campaign is encouraging everyone to have a “Big Conversation” with loved ones about what they want for the end of their lives, encouraging people to take some simple steps to make their end of life experience better, both for them and for their loved ones. Our Drop In event will mirror this Big Conversation theme and you will be able to talk to approachable individuals and pick up an array of information to take away, think about and discuss with your loved ones.  Topics will include:

  • Writing your will and other legal issues:  We will have an advisor available to share information about the importance of wills, power of attorney, mental capacity and other legal issues;
  • Thinking about your digital assets when you die:  Have you thought about what will happen to you digital assets – possessions that are purchased, stored or available online such as your Facebook account, twitter, online accounts etc – when you die?  James Norris, founder of DeadSocial and the Digital Legacy Association will be on hand to give advice and information on how to sort out your digital legacy.
  • Thinking about your own funeral wishes:  Poppy from Poppy’s Funerals will be on hand to answer any question you have never been able to ask about funerals and related matters.  If you’ve never met Poppy, she is not your stereotype undertaker ….!
  • Planning your future care and support: We will have Clinical Nurse Specialists available to help you think and talk about how you might like to be cared for when you die;
  • Registering as an organ donor:  We will have resources available to help you think about registering for organ and tissue donation;
  • Telling your loved ones your wishes:  We will have people and resources available to help you begin to think about how you might let people know about your wishes;

Please come along, bring a colleague or friend and find out more.  You will be very welcome.  Light refreshments will be available.

To register your attendance or if you have any questions in advance of the event please contact Sue Tappenden, EOLC Commissioning Lead via email or call 07801 627947.

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