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How to have the uncomfortable ACP conversation

For some, the hard part was completing their Advance Care Plan. For others, sharing their plan with loved ones is most difficult.

It might be uncomfortable, but did you know that those who discussed their plan with their loved ones were more likely to receive the care that mattered to them? It also reduced the stress and anxiety experienced by their loved ones in those moments.

We’ve put together some pointers to help make this conversation easier.

ACP conversation

Before this conversation, prepare with this checklist:

☐ Review your Koda plan. Contact us if you need access to it. Make sure it reflects who you are today.

☐ Update your plan here if you need to make changes! Koda will cover the cost of updating and notarizing your document.

☐ Create a space and time where you can have a focused conversation and let your loved ones know. Here’s an example of how to invite them:

“Hey Kevin. After dinner I’d like to discuss my healthcare plan with you. It’s really important to me, and I’d like you to hear me out and share your thoughts with me.”

☐ Prepare a few talking points to touch on during the conversation:

  • Why you’re doing this planning
  • The morals and values behind your choices
  • Why you’re sharing this with them
  • Where your plan is if they need to access it

Here are some pointers for the actual conversation:

☐ Go through your plan one question at a time, giving everyone space to express their thoughts.

☐ Understand that their perspective may be quite different than your own – and that is OK!

☐ Recognize that you may have to have pause and revisit the conversation at a later time. It may take several conversations before you all are on the same page.

☐ Update your plan, after these conversations if necessary. It’s common to select a different Medical Decision Maker or change your priorities based on these discussions.

This uncomfortable conversation will be one they’ll be thankful for in the long run. We’d love to hear how it went! Email us at with your story.