Dying Matters- Let's Talk About It!

The Public Health Agency is urging everyone to take the opportunity to talk openly about their wishes for future care, dying and bereavement with their loved ones.

The campaign marks Dying Matters Awareness Week, 13-19 May, with the theme 'Are We Ready?'

Corrina Grimes, Palliative Care Lead at the PHA, is encouraging the public to talk to each other about the issue. She said: "Many of us have specific wishes about how and where we would like to die and what we would like to happen after our death. However, we sometimes don't like to talk about our wishes and thoughts about death and dying, perhaps due to fear of the subject or concern that we may upset our family or friends.

"The reality is, however, that if we don't have these types of conversations it can mean that people's wishes go unfulfilled and families may struggle to make decisions. There may be important matters you want to address now rather than when time feels limited."
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The PHA is advising people to take the following steps to make their end of life experience better:

• Make a will

• Record your funeral wishes

• Plan your future care and support

• Register as an organ donor

• Tell loved ones your wishes.

Ms Grimes continued: "We want to get as many people as possible thinking, talking and acting during Dying Matters Awareness Week. Talking about dying, death and bereavement is in everyone's interests as it can help ensure that all of us can get the care and support we want, and where we want it, at the end of our lives.

"Even just having a chat with family, friends or colleagues about the importance of preparing for death can change perceptions. Through being more confident in talking about dying and taking small actions to plan for the future and support each other, together we can make a big difference. Talking about death does not bring it any closer. It is about planning for life."


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