PO Box 360
Trenton, NJ 08625-0360

For Release:
February 20, 2013

Mary E. O'Dowd, M.P.H.
Commissioner

For Further Information Contact:
Department of Health Office of Communications
(609) 984-7160

New Jersey Hospital Association:
Kerry McKean Kelly, NJHA
609-275-4069

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Commissioner O’Dowd and Steering Committee to Unveil New Jersey’s POLST Form

New Jersey Health Commissioner Mary E. O'Dowd and members of the POLST Steering Committee led by the NJHA Institute for Quality and Patient Safety will unveil New Jersey's new POLST form Feb. 22 at the New Jersey Hospital Association in Princeton. POLST - Practitioner Orders for Life-Sustaining Treatment - is a new statewide program to empower individuals to make decisions regarding their medical care at the end of life. The new POLST form is designed to be completed jointly by an individual and a physician or advance practice nurse, detailing the individual's goals of care and medical preferences. Unlike other documents like an Advance Directive, a completed POLST form is an actual medical order that becomes a permanent part of the individual's medical record and is valid in all healthcare settings. The POLST form is intended for patients with a life-limiting illness; it allows them to state detailed preferences on specific goals and medical interventions.

The POLST Steering Committee and other healthcare stakeholders will meet at 2 p.m. to share the POLST form and other resources for providers. Commissioner O'Dowd, along with NJHA President and CEO Betsy Ryan and some members of the POLST Steering Committee, will hold a briefing session for reporters at 1:30 p.m.

WHAT:           Introduction of New Jersey's POLST Form

WHO:            N.J. Health Commissioner Mary E. O'Dowd
                     NJHA President and CEO Betsy Ryan
                     Members of the POLST Steering Committee

WHERE:         Conference Center at NJHA, 760 Alexander Road, Princeton 08543

WHEN:           1:30 p.m. Media briefing, Conference Room 1
                    2 p.m. Steering Committee meeting, Rooms ABC