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What’s on your bucket list?

A team of 13 students in Drury University’s Department of Communication are asking this question as part of the #Bucketlistplus1 campaign, an initiative to spark conversations about medical treatments and end-of-life decisions.

According to a 2013 study by the Pew Research Center, only 35% of adults have written down or orally expressed their wishes for end-of-life care. For adults ages 18-49, only 26% have made preparations for end-of-life decisions. Without clear direction, there is little to ensure patients’ wishes will be fulfilled in situations where they are unable to communicate for themselves.

The #Bucketlistplus1 campaign asks individuals to put as much thought into advance care planning as they put into their bucket lists. Dream big and create the bucket list, but don’t forget to add one important item to the list – complete an advance directive.

To help peers complete this call to action, we have developed a website on advance healthcare planning: bucketlistplus1.com.  Various activities will take place in February, March, and April to support the campaign’s four steps:  Learn, Talk, Plan, and Notarize. While the campaign was designed to support college students in advance planning, we encourage staff and faculty to use the resources and participate in activities.

The campaign culminates on Monday, April 16, National Healthcare Decisions Day. Notaries will be on campus so that members of the Drury community can make their advance directive official.

Ann Neumann, author of The Good Death: An Exploration of Dying in America” will be on campus for the Signing Day events. Erin Hotchkiss, general manager of KDRU and account executive for the student campaign, will interview Ms. Neumann about barriers to end-of-life planning.

Individuals who sign and notarize their advance directive on April 16 will have their names entered into a drawing for prizes that could help make bucket list dreams come true.

Follow the campaign on social media and be sure to tell us what’s on  your bucket list by visiting our campaign website. Download a copy of an advance directive and start conversing with your family and friends about what’s important to you.

Don’t leave family and physicians guessing about your expectations for care and treatment. It’s your life. It’s your death. It’s your plan. #bucketlistplus1

If you have any questions about the campaign, please contact the course instructor Dr. Regina Waters (rwaters@drury.edu).

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