Wednesday, June 29, 2022

Play

The Supreme Court weakens Miranda rights protections, a campaign gathers signatures to start a consumer-owned utility in Maine, and the Jan. 6 Committee subpoenas former White House counsel Pat Cipollone.

Play

Immigration advocates criticize border policies after migrants die in a tractor-trailer, the U.S. opens a permanent headquarters for U.S. forces in Poland, and a House committee hears about growing housing inequity.

Play

From flying saucers to bologna America's summer festivals kick off, rural hospitals warn they do not have the necessities to respond in the post-Roe scramble, countering voter suppression, and campaigns encourage midterm voting in Indian Country.

Helping Hispanic Families Learn about End-of-Life Options

Play

Friday, June 12, 2020   

NEW YORK - As the death toll from the COVID-19 pandemic continues to rise, a new initiative is helping Mexican immigrants living in the United States deal with issues of end-of-life planning.

Hispanic Americans are 18% of the U.S. population, but account for 25% of COVID deaths, adding extra urgency to things like advance directives for end-of-life care.

Patricia A. González-Portillo is National Latino Communications and Constituency Director with the organization Compassion & Choices. She says the collaboration with a national health outreach program from the Mexican Consulate should help reduce disparities in end-of-life planning and health care that negatively impact the immigrant community.

"We can catch this horrible virus that can kill us," says González-Portillo. "Are we going to wait 'til that happens before we have the conversation with our family about what I want in case I die from this illness?"

Compassion & Choices has assembled a free, bilingual COVID-19 toolkit, which is available online at 'CompassionandChoices.org.'

Maria Otero, Compassion & Choice's national constituency manager, points out there are Hispanic cultural values - such as the importance of family involvement and the influence of religion - that affect behavior at the end of life. And there are cultural barriers, too.

"There's not a word in Spanish about advance directives. We don't have a word for 'hospice,'" says Otero. "So, often we are perceived like we are not very assertive to what we want at the end of life."

She adds that the pandemic represents an opportunity to start important conversations among families about a topic that most people prefer to avoid.

Because COVID-19 is so contagious, currently incurable and the symptoms can advance quickly, González-Portillo stresses that everyone should complete an advance directive.

"That clearly details what the person wishes for at the end of life," says González-Portillo. "So that family members are not left with this task of guessing, 'What would my brother want?'"

She says without an advance directive, hospitals often are forced to make decisions about medical interventions and treatment that may not be what the patient would want.

Disclosure: Compassion & Choices contributes to our fund for reporting on Civic Engagement, Health Issues, Senior Issues, Social Justice. If you would like to help support news in the public interest, click here.


get more stories like this via email
The United States generates more plastic waste than any other country, according to a report from The Pew Charitable Trusts. (EAD72/Adobe Stock)

Environment

California lawmakers are considering a bill today to cut down on single-use plastics that are choking the nation's landfills and oceans. Senate Bill …


Environment

Members of Nevada's African American community say they're channeling the spirit of Juneteenth to fight for environmental justice. Church-affiliated …

Health and Wellness

Wisconsin's 173-year-old abortion ban faces a legal test, as the state's Democratic leaders announced Tuesday they are suing to overturn it. The …


Some older adults in Connecticut may be eligible for the Weatherization Assistance Program, which can help decrease energy-related costs and fuel usage at home through retrofits and other improvements. (Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

Starting Friday, Connecticut residents may start to see a sharp increase in energy costs just as summer gets into gear and inflation hits people hard…

Social Issues

A new study found an association between what researchers are calling the biological age of sperm and reproductive success. While age is considered …

Advocates for older Iowans say elder abuse can happen in many forms, including physical assaults, financial exploitation and neglect. (Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

This Friday, Iowa's new elder abuse law goes into effect. Those who pushed for its passage hope victims are aware of the added protections and will …

Environment

Mapping migration routes is important for conserving species such as pronghorn, so supporters hope Congress will fund mapping efforts. The United …

Social Issues

Workers at a hospital on the Oregon coast are citing a victory in contract negotiations with their employer. More than 100 members of SEIU Local 49 …

 

Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member- and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright 2021