National Health Care Decisions Week Promotes Awareness of the Right to Health Care Self-Determination
CHICAGO, Sept. 30, 2004 — Americans facing the illness or death of a loved one often find it hard to make decisions affecting treatment and end-of-life care. The American Bar Association Section of Real Property, Probate and Trust Law is working to increase public awareness about the value of making advance health care decisions, during National Health Care Decisions Week Oct. 17-23.
Throughout the week, state and local bar associations nationwide, in partnership with community medical organizations, will provide outreach and educational efforts about health care decision-making. Now in its fifth year, National Health Care Decisions Week is co-sponsored by the American Medical Association, the National Medical Association and the National Bar Association, with funding from the Health Resources and Services Administration of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.
“Health care decision-making helps ease the stress and strain on family members in times of crisis. By making advance decisions, an individual takes responsibility and makes certain that their requests are met. By becoming an organ and tissue donor you are leaving a legacy, saving and improving the lives of others in need,” said Ed Koren of Tampa, Fla., chair of the section.
For more information about National Health Care Decisions Week and materials about health care advance directives and organ and tissue donation, visit the section’s Web site at www.abanet.org/rppt or call 312/988-5670. Other ABA entities supporting this effort include the sections of Dispute Resolution, Family Law, Health Law, Law Practice Management, and State and Local Government Law; the divisions of Government and Public Sector Lawyers, Senior Lawyers, and Young Lawyers; and the Commission on Law and Aging.
The ABA Section of Real Property, Probate and Trust Law, with approximately 30,000 members, is the leading national forum for lawyers practicing in these fields. The Probate and Trust Division is concerned with all aspects of trusts, estate planning, tax planning for estates, employee benefits, insurance, probate and trust litigation and related issues. The Real Property Division focuses on legal aspects of the ownership, use, development, transfer, regulation, financing, taxation and disposition of real estate.
With more than 400,000 members, the American Bar Association is the largest voluntary professional membership organization in the world. As the national voice of the legal profession, the ABA works to improve the administration of justice, promotes programs that assist lawyers and judges in their work, accredits law schools, provides continuing legal education, and works to build public understanding around the world of the importance of the rule of law in a democratic society.