It's important after a family meeting is concluded that you document
in the medical record about what occurred.
So, the things that you should include
in a note about this are, who participated in the meeting?
What was discussed during the meeting?
Were there any decisions that were made?
And what needs follow up?
So, if a particular decision was made
and there's a treatment plan in place,
what's going to be the follow up for that?
The reason that you need to document
is also because this is a way to communicate
with those that were not present in the meeting.
So, they can look back either in the moment
or in the future to see what was discussed.
It may also be important to do this verbally,
so, reach out to team members who did not attend the meeting
and talk to them about what the plan is going to be.
Everyone gets on the same page as a result.
You also should document, you know,
what needs to be done in subsequent discussions.
So, if it is for instance like a trial of therapy,
what's going to be the period of time to see
if the therapy is working and what are going to
be the outcomes to look for to reevaluate
whether it's working or not working?
There might be a need to say,
"Well, if the patient's condition changes,
we're going to need to have an additional family meeting."
So, always having that idea that you're planting the
seed for future discussions with the patient or family.
Maybe during the family meeting,
it would suggest, "Get input of other consultants."
Maybe there's a particular expertise that could be brought into
the case and you want to hear from those consultants,
so, what's going to be the plan
for them to review the case?
Perhaps meet with the patient of the family,
participate in future meetings, you want to have that clear.
And as I said, you know, during the family meeting,
it's also important to acknowledge that
the patient's comfort should be a main goal,
so, ways to address pain and symptom management
and to know whether those treatments
to improve their quality of life are working or not working
and what might need to be adjusted in the future.