Editor’s Mailbag

Focus on Vision resource event at Lafayette

LAFAYETTE — The Fields of Grace Churches at Lafayette and the Lafayette Area Lions will co-sponsor a Focus on Vision Impairment and Blindness Info & Resource Fair, Wednesday, April 25.

The event will be held from 1 to 4 p.m. at First Lutheran Church in Lafayette and will include a panel discussion, as well as displays of available resources for those experiencing vision issues.

Charlene Guggisberg, a staff member at Minnesota State Services for the Blind, will be the main presenter. She is a Lafayette native and daughter of Lafayette Lion Wally Guggisberg.

Additional Services for the Blind staffers and MN Lions Vision Foundation representatives will be on hand to share resources about daily living skills, assistive equipment, mobility options, support services, and research into vision problems.

People who have vision impairment issues, as well as those who work with or employ them will find information of use at this free event.

Topics will include, but aren’t limited to: low vision causes, options, and assistive devices; vision changes as a person ages; protecting eyes at work and home; finding the right magnification devices; choosing the right lighting for better sight; information for employers who want to make accommodations for those with vision problems; and research being supported by the Lions.

There is no charge for any part of the event. Coffee and refreshments will be served.

Sleepy Eye Medical Center to observes

National Healthcare Decisions Day

SLEEPY EYE – In observance of National Healthcare Decisions Day, April 16, Sleepy Eye Medical Center will be featuring “Honoring Choices Minnesota,” Twin Cities Medical Society initiative to start the conversations with your loved ones and have these preferences documented on a Health Care Directive. (HCD)

An informal discussion will occur at 1 p.m. on April 16 in the Union Room, with Cindy Steffl RN, Discharge Planner

The HCD allows you to document:

1. The person you trust as your health care agent to make decisions for you if you can’t

2. The type of medical treatment you want or do not want (feeding tubes, ventilators, resuscitation)

3.Where you want to receive care

4. Mental health treatments that use electroshock therapy

5. Instructions if you are pregnant

6. Donations of organs, tissues and eyes

7.Funeral arrangements

8. Who you would want as your guardian or conservator if there is a court action

We encourage you to take the blank document home and have a conversation with your family and with your doctor.

Next, make your personal health care decisions legal by completing the HCD and signing in the presence of a notary.

Give your health care provider a copy of the HCD and copies to your appointed health care agents.

National Healthcare Decisions Day is aimed at increasing the number of Americans who have completed a HCD, in which they name the person who will make medical decisions for them in the event they are seriously ill and can’t speak for themselves. Experts say only about 20 to 30 percent of Americans have completed an advance directive even though all people age 18 and older should have one.

“It’s understandable that people would put off discussing the topic of serious illness and death, but it’s essential to have this family conversation in advance,” Cindy Steffl said. “It’s a discussion that should take place in the living room, not in the hospital waiting room when it may be too late.”