FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
October 5, 2016
NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ– Today, Congressman Frank Pallone, Jr. (NJ-06) discussed the importance of developing a living will at JFK Medical Center in Edison, NJ. Pallone was joined by medical professionals and patients during the discussion, which was one of the monthly discussions held on important topics by JFK. Pallone took the opportunity to complete his own living will, highlighting the importance for all Americans, not just those immediately facing end of life care, to develop their own living will.
“I want to thank JFK for its work to educate its patients about the importance of a living will,” said Pallone. “By preparing my living will, I was able to begin a conversation about what would be best for my family and me in difficult times. My hope is that New Jerseyans will consider completing their own living will and ensure that their wishes are known during end of life care.”
A living will is a written, legal document that clearly states what types of medical treatments and life-sustaining measures a patient does and does not want. They can include being placed on a ventilator (a machine that breathes for you), tube feeding, surgery, etc.
Living wills allow individuals to make their own choices about life support and helps prevent confusion about the type of care the patient does or does not want to receive in the event they are incapable of communicating their wishes. Without a living will, one’s family members and doctors will make these health care decisions.
Both medical and legal experts recommend preparing a living will, however currently only 30% of Americans have done so.