Communicating with patients about serious illness is challenging under the best of circumstances. The COVID-19 pandemic reinforces the need for conversations that enable patients with serious illness or other risk factors to understand the potential impact of COVID-19 on their health, to share their worries, values, and priorities, and to make informed decisions.
In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Serious Illness Care Program has developed tools to address evolving clinical needs within the context of the crisis. These tools aim to make it easier for clinicians to have these discussions in a trustworthy and compassionate way during this time of uncertainty and distress.
Our goal is to equip Stanford providers with the tools, knowledge and support to have advance care planning conversations in the time of COVID-19. We hope to prevent non-beneficial or unwanted hospitalizations, critical care or procedures to respect patient wishes, prioritize health care resources and reduce COVID-19 exposure to patients, family members and health care workers.