Advance Care Planning For Providers

Advance care planning addresses a question that often goes unspoken:"What matters to you?"

Asking your patient what matters to them, will help both of you work together to begin to identify your patient's goals, values, and wishes. This lets you, your patient, and their family explore treatment options and develop a plan that reflects their wishes.

There are many benefits of bringing up the conversation with your patients:

  • Reducing hospitalization
  • Receiving fewer intensive treatments at the end of life
  • Increasing the use of hospice services and
  • Improving the ability for a patient to die in their preferred place

New York State is encouraging health care providers to start the advance care planning conversation not only to avoid unwanted medical interventions, but to ensure that patient wishes are followed.

Some questions you can ask are:

  • "What are your goals for your care" and, "How can I help you?"
  • "I noticed you do not have a health care proxy, would you like to learn more about what it means to have one?"
  • "What goals are most important if your health situation worsens?"
  • "What concerns you most when you think about your health and health care in the future?"

Can I Be Reimbursed for Having the Conversation?

Yes, if you are a health care provider, you can be reimbursed when you have conversations about advance care planning with your patients.

Medicare will pay for these conversations as either a separate Part B, medically necessary service, or as an element of a patient's annual wellness visit. Other insurers may also reimburse you. To find out, contact the plans with which you contract.

Advance Directives and Alzheimer’s Disease Webcast

The Alzheimer's Disease and Advance Directives: A Primer for Primary Care Physicians webcast raises awareness among healthcare providers, especially primary care physicians about the looming crisis of increasing Alzheimer's disease in this country. It provides critical information and tools to prepare healthcare providers to have constructive conversations with patients that have remaining capacity about their preferences for medical care in the advance stage of disease.