Thinking about the end of a life is never easy, whether it is your own or the life of someone close to you. But, planning ahead and having a better understanding of what is happening in the last days and hours might mean a comfortable death and could make a very difficult time just a little easier. The National Institute on Aging at NIH has information to help.
The resources listed here are based on scientific research and developed with experts in end-of-life issues. You will find information to help you understand advance care planning. There are also suggestions for beginning a conversation about end-of-life care and providing comfort care to someone near the end of life.
Advance care planning can be an important part of ensuring that people receive the kind of care that they want at the end of life. Researchers at Duke University supported by the NIA looked at whether race and ethnicity are related to differences in how people prepare and plan. Their findings suggest that a combination of beliefs and values contribute to older African Americans being less likely to have advance directives than older whites.
More Research on End of Life