As I renew my drivers license and confirm that I wish to be an organ donor, I can’t help but wonder what other information can be added to the bar code data embedded in each license.
If we are to address both healthcare spending and population health, the logical conclusion would be to address end of life issues. Consider a license that when scanned by a smart phone contained advanced health directives (ADs) or contact information of a designated power of attorney. Imagine every renewal of a state ID requiring completion or updating of that state’s AD form, facilitating discussions with families and providers before crisis hits.
The Joy of Medicine for me comes with the fulfillment of my patients wishes. A state pilot program that embeds this data into IDs could be the beginning of turning a dark reality of unknown desires and medically futile efforts into one that better respects autonomy, saves resources, and allows providers to be more confident that they are helping their patient
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