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 2/28/17: Honoring Choices Can Help you “Start the Conversation”

Advance care planning is one of the most pressing issues of 21st century medicine, with studies showing 80 percent of Americans would prefer to die at home but only 20 percent achieve that wish.

But as one critical and palliative care specialist recently wrote in The New York Times: “By the time patients are approaching the end, they are often too weak or disabled to express their preferences, if those preferences were ever considered at all.”

Honoring Choices ® Virginia – an initiative of the Richmond Academy of Medicine – is working hard to improve this situation. We are now making training available to community providers, with plenty of ways to get involved! And Medicare now covers advance care planning for beneficiaries, a great way to integrate ACP into your practice workflow.

1. Are you interested in building your team’s skill in having quality, person-centered advance care planning conversations? If so, click below to view the registration form for one of our upcoming facilitator trainings:

Friday, March 31st | 8 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. Facilitator Training Registration

Friday, June 1st | 8 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. Facilitator Training Registration

RAM members (or staff of RAM members) who register by March 10 will receive complimentary CEUs, a savings of $30.

2. Is your practice affiliated with one of our founding partners – Bon Secours, HCA Virginia or VCU Health? If so, you may be eligible to become an Honoring Choices site through our health system implementation.

3. Would your practice or organization be interested in joining the 37 clinical teams that are part of our collaborative? We have participation options available for organizations of all sizes.

4. Are you a safety net provider who serves older adults? We recently received grant funding to support facilitator training for those serving vulnerable populations.

Interested in learning more? Please contact Robin Clair Cummings, director of Honoring Choices Virginia, for additional information – 804.622.8141 or

New study addresses information sharing in Central Virginia
An interdisciplinary team led by J. Brian Cassel, PhD of VCU Health in collaboration with Honoring Choices, the state health information exchange and the Virginia Department of Health has developed a comprehensive report and associated recommendations for ensuring access to advance care plans wherever a patient seeks emergency medical care. The report recognizes that with the fragmented nature of health care and the many transitions patients with progressive diseases and chronic conditions make across settings and providers, it is crucial that patients’ preferences and values regarding their care are not only elicited and documented, but also actively shared. This study was funded by AcademyHealth through its EDM Forum. Read the report here.
“Sharing the Experience” Conference Celebrates Successes & Shares New Perspectives!  
Our 2nd annual “Sharing the Experience” conference in April celebrated the many strides we’ve made in just over a year of operation. It also provided a forum to hear from some of the people whose lives have been touched by Honoring Choices’ incredible team of compassionate facilitators. We also were privileged to hear from a nationally-known speaker, Amy Berman. Click here to read more.
Honoring Choices Honored! 
CLICK HERE for a terrific profile of Robin Clair Cummings, director of Honoring Choices, in the Richmond Times-Dispatch. "I am energized by the commitment our local community is making to easing some of the stress a family will experience when a loved one is in a dire situation,” she said of her work with Honoring Choices.  

The program also drew praise in on the RTD Editorial page, and in particular the leadership of former RAM Executive Director Deb Love and Immediate Past President Dr. Richard Szucs.

A Richmond magazine health blog reports on a grant to Honoring Choices to develop a system in which various health care providers can share a patient’s advance care planning documents.

Honoring Choices also was included in a list of Richmond’s "good nonprofits.”  
Honoring Choices Part of National Study
Release Date: December 11, 2015

Honoring Choices Contact: Chip Jones (804-622-8136
AcademyHealth Contact: Kristin Rosengren (202-689-9067

  Richmond, Va. – Honoring Choices® Virginia is pleased to announce it has been chosen for study under a national grant from the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality to develop solutions for sharing advance care planning documents across a spectrum of healthcare providers and clinical settings using tools like Virginia’s Advance Directive Registry. Virginia Commonwealth University Health System will lead the project. CLICK HERE to read the full press release.


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