Tell 3 people this Dying Matters Week

Monday, May 10, 2021

During Dying Matters Week people are being encouraged to talk more about what they want from their future care, particularly when they are reaching the end of their life. End of Life programme managers from across the North West have joined forces to encourage us to ‘tell 3 people’ about what matters to us.

It doesn’t have to be just about the big things like the treatment you would or wouldn’t want or where you would wish to die, it can be the smaller things that are significant to you.

Talking about death doesn’t bring death closer. It’s about planning for life, helping us make the most of the time that we have. However, starting the conversation, particularly with those close to you, is never easy. We don’t want to upset people, or sound gloomy.

Families commonly report that it comes as a relief once the subject is brought out into the open. You are able to express your thoughts about the way you wish to be cared for, where you’d like to die, or what you’d like to happen after you die. This helps you and your loved ones to cope better both emotionally and practically with what your death could mean.

Kathy Collins, programme manager for palliative and end of life Care at Cheshire and Merseyside Health and Care Partnership said “Imagine you were in a care setting; what would you want the people caring for you to know? Would you like music playing? Is it important to you that they know how many sugars you have? Do you want someone to do your hair and make up for you if you can't? Where would you like to be when the end of your life comes? Those smaller details might be very significant to you or someone you love and it's important that we feel comfortable having those conversations so that you know you will have the best life right until the end”.

Kathy suggests if you’re worried about getting it wrong with those you love, you can discuss it first with someone else you respect and trust – a nurse, friend or work colleague, for example.

“Sometimes talking about important subjects like this isn’t a matter of having one conversation which covers everything– it can be many small conversations which are informal and light hearted or more formal ones, whatever feels natural to you. That's why we're asking people to have the conversation about what matters to them with the people important to them

We hope that you'll join in the conversation and tell 3 people what is important to you.”

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