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The Role of Family and Health Lawyers in End-of-Life Decisions


AHLA's Conversations with Policymakers Series
Wednesday, September 21, 2005


Dr. Ira Byock, an author of multiple books on the subject of death and dying, joined AHLA members Elisabeth Belmont, Esq., MaineHealth and Barbara Miltenberger, Esq., R.N., Husch & Eppenberger, LLC for an important discussion on preparing for the end of life and caring for those with life-limiting conditions. Ms. Belmont and Ms. Miltenberger are the co-chairs of the task force that produced A Guide to Legal Issues in Life Limiting Conditions, the second installment in AHLA's Public Information Series. The Guide provides a checklist of issues that arise in caring for individuals who face life limiting conditions. The authors use a checklist approach that empowers consumers to ask the difficult questions that arise along the continuum from physical health to debilitating illness.

Dr. Byock put in context Americans' aversion to planning for their own future or asking the necessary questions to care for a vulnerable loved one. Ms. Belmont and Ms. Miltenberger provided a brief overview of the legal issues identified in the checklist, from advance planning through independent living, long term care and, finally, palliative care and hospice. They also provided the audience with a helpful, top-ten lessons learned from their work on A Guide to Legal Issues in Life-Limiting Conditions. Time was provided for questions and discussion with callers.

Download audio recording (MP3 file, 1 hour 21 minutes, 18.6 megabytes)

The modest registration fee of $25 for each Conversations with Policymakers teleconference is made possible through the generous support of several health law organizations. Health Lawyers sincerely thanks the following sponsors of the Fall 2005 Conversations with Policymakers teleconference series:

Alston & Bird LLP
Baker Donelson Bearman Caldwell & Berkowitz PC
Cozen O'Connor PC
Holland & Knight LLP
Polsinelli Shalton Welte Suelthaus PC
Powell Goldstein LLP
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