I am sharing this blog post regarding issues of Guardianship and Shared Decision Making. There are many concerns.
Surely, Shared Decision Making is an important tool to use with those who may need help with making life decisions. In fact, most of us have some sort of informal set up of a shared decision-making network without really knowing it. How many of us ask others we know before making a decision and do we seek out people who know about the issues the decision will be about? Do we seek out people who know us or have an interest in our lives?
Shared Decision Making is assuming the person cares about making decisions. If the person has no interest in making some decisions or has no understanding of the situation, how is that person going to be active in the decision making process? In these situations, my assumption is that a guardian, who knows and understands the person best, is the person who should be helping the person make a decision.
A guardianship is a process that has gone through the proper legal, medical and social systems. Yes, there are cases of abuse of the system but for many, it is the best and safest option to ensure a person has the optimal care and opportunity to make person-centered plans
We are questioning statements from a leading organization seeking to reduce or eliminate guardianships that imply that a guardian may not be necessary even for some of the lowest functioning people with intellectual or developmental disabilities. In an email to me on September 27, Dari Pogach, a staff attorney with the American Bar Association’s Commission on Law and Aging, […]