Blogging time was taken up with planning and facilitating time as I coordinated a health care series at Arvada United Methodist Church this March. We had 3 great presenters from Kaiser, the Colorado Department of Health Care Policy and Finance and the Bell Policy Institute. There is an appetite out there to delve into our health care system and understand why it costs so much. Our congregation is “mature,” and the most mature ones are those that tend to participate in the adult education offerings.
One thing I wondered was whether people were open to discussing end of life issues as it relates to health care costs. At least in our groups, they were. There is an understanding that an inordinate amount of money is spent on medical interventions at the very end of life and that there is something wrong with that. We’ve hosted presentations on “The 5 Wishes” and palliative care. More palliative and less curative interventions for the very sick and the very old is a motto I believe many would embrace.
It’s remarkable honestly, given the dominant messaging that we hear from the medical industry. “Do this, do that. Take this, take that.” One individual in the group phrased it well. “We need to start asking the question, “It’s not can we, but should we?” It’s a hopeful sign to me. One that recognizes a responsibility to future generations and a less fearful approach to death and dying. I would call it faith-full.