Economist article about end of life planning

One of my students today just sent me this link to an article in this week’s Economist about end-of-life planning.

How to have a better death

It led me to also view its link about conversations about serious illness by one of my favorite authors.

“Serious Illness Conversation Guide” drawn up by Atul Gawande

I also found these slides targeting providers informative as well.

Using the Serious Illness Conversation Guide – HealthInsight

I found it informative that CMS (Medicare) created two new Advance Care Planning (ACP) codes. It will be interesting to see how often they are used.

Two new codes created in 2015, allowed for payment by Medicare in 2016.

  • 99497 ACP 30 minutes $85.99
  • 99498 ACP additional 30 minutes $74.88

CPT describes eligible services as being performed by a physician or “other qualified health professional” which means a physician, NP or PA.

We could save a lot of money and improve happiness and quality of life if more doctors, nurses, families and patients talked about these issues.


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