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My Health – My Decision. A class to help people who can make decisions be more involved in their healthcare decisions. Created by: Anne Bates, Bill Hill, Kathy Lynn & P Sue Kullen. What Do I Need to Know?. 1. How to make decisions 2. How to have more power over your health care decisions

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my health my decision

My Health – My Decision

A class to help people who can make decisions be more involved in their healthcare decisions

Created by:Anne Bates, Bill Hill, Kathy Lynn & P Sue Kullen

what do i need to know
What Do I Need to Know?

1. How to make decisions

2. How to have more power over your health care decisions

3. How to pick people you trust to help you

4. How to plan way ahead

i can make decisions
I Can Make Decisions
  • Healthcare is personal, but you may feel you do not always have a say in what it takes to keep you healthy.
  • You have the power and the right to make choices about everything that affects you.
  • You must also balance what is good for you with what you may not like.
i do make decisions
I Do Make Decisions

You make lots of decisions every day.

  • What time do I get up?
  • What do I have for breakfast?
  • What do I wear today?
  • What do I watch on TV?

You should also be making decisions about your health.

  • When should I go to my doctor?
  • Should I exercise today?
  • How often should I brush my teeth?
  • When should I take my medicine?
  • Who can take me to my doctor?

If you are not making these choices, talk about it with someone you trust or at you next planning meeting.

for example
For Example…

You may not like salad or vegetables but you eat them because you know they are good for you. You may not like going to the dentist but you know that you should because you want healthy teeth. All adults make these decisions.

  • Should I go to the dentist every 6 months?
  • What may happen if I do not?
  • What may happen it I do go?
  • What other information do I need?
  • Who could help me if I am scared?
  • Can I just wait?
making choices
Making Choices

With all decisions, there are always choices to make. Let’s look at an example of a healthcare decision to find out what the choices are.

The next 2 slides will show you a good map to use.


What may happen if I do?

What may happen if I don’t?


Who can help?





I will have clean healthy teeth

  • I may feel better
  • It may hurt
  • I feel out of control
  • I feel scared
  • It costs money
  • Going every 6 months may keep my teeth from hurting!
  • It will still hurt
  • People will hassle me
  • I may lose my teeth
  • I may have bad breath
  • I may get bigger problems

What may happen if I do?

What may happen if I don’t?

What happens if I wait?

Family or Friends

Who can help?

My Dentist


Should I go to the dentist every 6 months?



i have power over my healthcare decisions
I Have Power Over My Healthcare Decisions
  • You are an adult and responsible for yourself.
  • Just because you may need help to make some decisions does not mean you have less rights than other people.
  • So what needs to happen to make sure that you are in charge?
know how to use your power
Know How to Use Your Power
  • You have the right to ask for all the things you just read. If anything on that list is not happening, talk to someone you trust.
  • It’s important to get help when you need it. That’s being responsible.
i can pick someone i trust to help me
I Can Pick Someone I Trust to Help Me
  • We all need help at times.
  • Asking other people for help is good so we can get another point of view.
  • And it’s nice to know that people care about us!
how do i choose someone
How Do I Choose Someone?
  • Think about the people you know and trust the most.
    • Some people you trust with your secrets
    • Some people you trust to help or guide you
  • There are even people you may trust to make decisions for you.
    • Not everyone can make healthcare decisions for you
who can i choose
Who Can I Choose?
  • When you choose someone to make healthcare decisions for you, they are called your Health Care Agent
    • A Health Care Agent can make choices that are too hard for you, or when you are too sick to make them
  • Your Health Care Agent should be:
    • A family member
    • A friend who knows you and can help you to better understand the decision
    • Not paid staff
how do i say what i want
How Do I Say What I Want?
  • Your Health Care Agent can make the decisions you decide they should make
    • Like if you will have surgery or not
    • Or they can make all of your decisions with you
    • It is your choice and your right
  • These tools can help you and your Health Care Agent to decide how they will help you.

Five WishesMaryland Health Care Agent

i can plan ahead for healthcare
I Can Plan Ahead for Healthcare

Some decisions may be hard to think about… but if you are too sick to say what you want, it may be better to plan than to have people guess what you might want

some questions to think about
Some Questions to Think About
  • Who would you like to make decisions if you are too sick to make them?
  • Is there a hospital you prefer?
  • Who do you want called if you go to the hospital?
  • Would you want visitors, or would you rather have quiet?
Are there things you would want with you in the hospital…like a special pillow or warm socks?
  • Would you want extra medicine so you do not feel pain, even if it makes you sleep more?
  • Would you want to be on a machine to help you breathe if you might not wake up again?
  • Would you want people to pray for you?
  • What do you think about a nursing home?
planning tools
Planning Tools
  • There are tools for you and your Health Care Agent.
  • The most important thing is to let people know what you want!


Five Wishes

My Wishes

Maryland Health Care Agent Forms

final thoughts
Final Thoughts…

Share this website with the people you trust to help you...

Talk with them about what you’ve learned