Vim & Vigor - Winter 2017 - University of Virginia - 23

Planning for

PEACE

MIND

of

Put a life care plan in place so you and your
family are prepared for whatever happens-
then go enjoy life BY STEPHANIE THURROTT

ILLUSTRATIONS BY SARAH WILKINS

L

eonard D. Reeves, MD, knows firsthand how important it is to have a
plan in place so your loved ones can
make decisions for you if you can't.
"I lost my wife about six years ago. She was
not old-she was 53-but she had liver failure," he says. "We had talked about what she
wanted. She did not want to be put on any
mechanical assistance. So we were able to do
what she wished, and it was so much easier
when we gathered the family to know that this
was her wish, and not necessarily any one of
us wanting our wish imposed on her."

Reeves, a member of the board of directors of the American Academy of Family
Physicians, encourages his own patients to
share their wishes with their loved ones and
to get the proper paperwork in place so loved
ones can voice those wishes in case of illness
or death. It's not always easy to talk about,
but it's important.
Would you want life support in the form
of a feeding tube or ventilator? Or would you
prefer to die a natural death? "Talk with family members and let them know what you
want and what you don't want," Reeves says.

WINTE R 2017

23



Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Vim & Vigor - Winter 2017 - University of Virginia

Contents
Vim & Vigor - Winter 2017 - University of Virginia - Cover1
Vim & Vigor - Winter 2017 - University of Virginia - Cover2
Vim & Vigor - Winter 2017 - University of Virginia - Contents
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Vim & Vigor - Winter 2017 - University of Virginia - Cover3
Vim & Vigor - Winter 2017 - University of Virginia - Cover4
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