Shared Decision Making

SCHA Board approves SC Healthcare Decisions Day action guide to promote advance directives

Read more here. 

Celebrate National Healthcare Decisions Day (NHDD) and SC Healthcare Decisions Day (SCHDD) on April 16!

Despite recent gains in public awareness of the need for advance healthcare planning, studies indicate that most Americans do not have an advance directive, such as a Healthcare Power of Attorney or Living Will. 

  • The purpose of NHDD and SCHDD is to inspire, educate & empower the public & providers about the importance of advance healthcare planning. 
  • The goal is to encourage patients/the public to express their wishes regarding healthcare advance directives,  and for providers and facilities to respect those wishes, whatever they may be. 

Health Care Power of Attorney

A durable power of attorney for health care is a document that names your health care proxy. Your proxy is someone you trust to make health decisions if you are unable to do so. Please access the power of attorney forms in English and Spanish on the right of this page.

SC Living Will or “Declaration of a Desire for a Natural Death” under the SC Death with Dignity Act

A living will tells how you feel about care intended to sustain life. You can accept or refuse medical care. There are many issues to address, including tube feeding, dialysis, organ donation and breathing machines. Please access the SC Living Will Form attachments on the right of this page.

View  here

SC Adult Health Care Consent Act

If you do not have an advance directive, the SC Adult Health Care Consent Act lists the order of priority of persons who may make health care decisions for a patient who is unable to consent.

SC Emergency Medical Services (EMS) Do Not Resuscitate (DNR) Form

Physicians must request the SC Emergency Medical Services (EMS) Do Not Resuscitate (DNR) Form  which allows EMS personnel to honor written DNR orders on an adult patient who is terminally ill. Talk with your physician if you want more information, and ask him or her to call DHEC EMS office at (803) 545-4204 to request this form.

SC Coalition for the Care of the Seriously Ill 

This statewide coalition brings key organizations, clinicians, and healthcare entities together to collaboratively  redesign care, improve quality of life, and protect the ethical rights of the seriously, chronically, or terminally ill in South Carolina. The coalition is committed to improving the shared decision-making for this population by implementing strategies which help patients understand the typical trajectory of their condition and take an active role in their treatment, including decisions about their care.

The coalition is examining the feasibility of implementing the national POLST (Physician Orders for Life-Sustaining Treatment) Paradigm in our state so that patient directives  can more easily be followed. Legislation would be required. The coalition is also developing a manual and toolkit to help clinicians and healthcare facilities understand the ethical issues involved in chronic, serious, and terminal illnesses, provide palliative care for patients in all settings, and ensure that the patient has an active voice in the care decision process.

Members of the Coalition include the South Carolina Medical Association, The Carolinas Center for Hospice and End of Life Care, the South Carolina Hospital Association, the SC Healthcare Ethics Network, The S.C. Society of Chaplains, LifePoint, AARP, and the South Carolina Nurses Association.

Documents and Resources