…are important as we all die one day.

…are conversations that address our personal views on death and dying.

…are conversations focusing on matters that are important to us as we approach the end of life. These include:

Dare to Talk, Care to Listen

Some find it hard as they...

  • Do not wish to face their own mortality. But we know that,
    • Talking about dying won’t make it happen.
    • Not talking about dying does not prevent it.
  • Fear upsetting others.
    • Yes, it can be an emotional conversation but your views and concerns need to be heard. Likewise, be a good listener when your loved ones share theirs.
  • Do not know how.
    • The biggest reason for discomfort with talking about death/ dying is that they do not know how to broach the topic (45%).

Everyday about 55 people die in Singapore

We had a patient with a severe neurological condition. She was bed-bound and deteriorating very rapidly. She was also suffering from recurrent chest infection. Her husband had said that she was very clear that she only wanted to be kept comfortable if she could no longer communicate with others. However her relatives came and demanded that she be sent to the intensive care unit. That would not have helped much except maybe increase her suffering with all the tubes and lines. Fortunately, she had documented her preferences in an advance care plan. This helped to resolve the conflict between her husband and her siblings. She died peacefully 2 weeks later.
Dr Beverly Siew
Palliative Care Physician
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