National Healthcare Decisions Day (NHDD) is held on April 16 each year. It exists to inspire, educate and empower the public and healthcare providers about the importance of advance care planning. The NHDD initiative encourages patients to express their wishes regarding healthcare, and providers and facilities to respect those wishes, whatever they may be. NHDD was founded in 2008 to provide clear, concise, and consistent information on healthcare decision-making to both the public and providers through the widespread availability and dissemination of simple, free, and uniform materials and content to guide the process.
It is somewhat ironic that NHDD will occur this year during a worldwide pandemic. As a result, during this unprecedented time of social distancing and other mitigation measures, many NHDD-related events have been cancelled. Still, advance care planning remains as important as ever. The ongoing COVID-19 crisis serves as a reminder of the importance of doing advance planning should you ever be stricken with an illness or medical condition that could render you incapable of making an important decision about your own care.
“It is essential for people to consider who would speak for them if they became unable to make their own decisions when they are very sick,” said Dr. Alexander Nesbitt, a geriatrician at UPMC Susquehanna. “It’s also important to consider and communicate preferences about care that would be wanted. National Healthcare Decisions Day is an opportunity to consider, discuss and document what you do or don’t want.”
UPDATE (as of March 30, 2020):
Steinbacher, Goodall & Yurchak has received approval from Governor Wolf's Office to conduct time-sensitive document signings for those clients in a crisis during the shutdown. Time-sensitive and crisis situations will be determined with each individual client on a case-by-case basis. Any in-person meeting will be conducted while observing the required social distancing guidelines and other mitigation measures to protect our clients and staff. The firm remains open and here to serve you in your time of need, and our staff will continue working remotely, with our physical offices in Williamsport and State College remaining closed until the Governor's shutdown order is rescinded. We thank you for your understanding during these challenging and unprecedented times.
Also, please visit our seminars & podcasts page for a library of content on a variety of elder law topics, which is being updated with new content weekly.
UPDATE (as of March 23, 2020):
The coronavirus pandemic has forced many businesses and organizations around the world to quickly change the way they operate over the course of just a few weeks or even days, and that certainly applies to us here at Steinbacher, Goodall & Yurchak. In order to comply with Governor Wolf's shutdown order of all non life-sustaining businesses, we are now operating remotely. So, while our physical offices in Williamsport and State College are closed, the firm remains open and here to serve you in your time of need, because we realize that your needs don't just stop because of a global pandemic.
All of our client appointments for the time being will be via phone or video conferencing. For those clients that already have an appointment scheduled, our office will be in touch with you about moving it to a phone or video conference or rescheduling.
We will also be offering some upcoming teleseminars, both live and recorded, that can be accessed via video or phone. The first such seminar will be on Thursday, April 2, from 1-2:30 p.m., and will be titled "What's in Your Pot 'O Gold: Trusts & Estate Planning 101. In this teleseminar, attendees will learn about the following:
Types of trusts and the process of trust funding
• The different use of Revocable and Irrevocable trusts
• How a trust can affect taxes and probate
• Planning around a disability with a Special Needs Trust
• Trusts that protect inherited IRAs
• Trusts that provide for future generations
• Documents that talk nice to each other
• The most important document everyone needs
• Planning to plan — when should you begin