Membership organization that promotes positive social change for individuals age 50 and over through information, advocacy and service.

Aging with Dignity
Five Wishes helps you express how you want to be treated if you are seriously ill and unable to speak for yourself. It deals with all of a person’s needs: medical, personal, emotional and spiritual.

Administration on Aging
Federal agency charged with responsibility for carrying out the Older Americans Act.

American Academy of Hospice and Palliative Medicine

Caring Connections
Caring Connections provides people with information and support when they are planning ahead, caring for a loved one, living with an illness or grieving a loss.

Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services
Federal agency that administers Medicare, Medicaid, and the Children’s Health Insurance Program.

Florida Agency for Health Care Administration
Our mission is Better Health Care for All Floridians, and together we are responsible for the administration of the Medicaid program, for the licensure and regulation of health facilities and for providing information to Floridians about the quality of the health care they receive in Florida

Florida Association of Area Agencies on Aging
Organization of the state’s 11 partners Area Agencies on Aging, who work as a team to help ensure that older Floridians can live their retirement years with dignity.

Florida Department of Community Affairs
State agency whose mission is to help meet the needs of Floridians by investing in communities and working with them to plan and manage growth and infrastructure.

Florida Department of Elder Affairs
Florida Department of Elder Affairs, the primary state agency administering human services programs to benefit Florida’s elders.

Florida Department of Financial Services
State agency directed by the Chief Financial Officer, the constitutional official whose duties include investigating financial fraud, overseeing insurance agents and agencies, and helping consumers with financial services issues.

Florida Department of Health
State agency that promotes and protects the health and safety of all people in Florida through the delivery of quality public health services and the promotion of health care standards.

Florida Department of Health and Human Services
Federal agency that offers comprehensive information for seniors including news, benefits and government programs.

Florida Department of Veterans Affairs
State agency that helps Florida veterans, their families and survivors improve their health and economic well-being through quality benefit information, advocacy, education and long-term health services.

Growth House
The Internet’s leading portal for information about end-of-life care. Resources for death and dying, hospice and palliative care, grief, and related topics.

Hospice and Palliative Nurses Association
Information about membership, publications, conferences and certification.

Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations
An independent, not-for-profit organization, The Joint Commission accredits and certifies more than 19,000 health care organizations and programs in the United States. Joint Commission accreditation and certification is recognized nationwide as a symbol of quality that reflects an organization’s commitment to meeting certain performance standards.

National Hospice and Palliative Care
NHPCO is dedicated to promoting and maintaining quality care for terminally ill persons and their families, and to making hospice an integral part of society.

National Institute for Jewish Hospice

Social Security Administration
Federal agency that implements social programs, including federal age-based pensions and disability insurance.


Advance Care Planning Legal Issues

Care Advance Directives
Advance Directive The term advance directive describes two types of legal documents that enable you to plan for and communicate your end-of-life wishes in the event that you are unable to communicate, a living will and medical power of attorney. This section will describe advance directives, choosing and being a healthcare agent and preparing your advance directives.

Your Right to Decide and Make Your Wishes Known

Planning Ahead

When You Are Unable To Care For Yourself:Florida law addresses the two most common documents through which individuals may make their health care wishes known:
-Living Will
-Designation of Health Care SurrogateFive Wishes has become America’s most popular living will because it is written in everyday language and helps start and structure important conversations about care in times of serious illness.
Five Wishes lets your family and doctors know:
-Who you want to make health care decisions for you when you can’t make them.
-The kind of medical treatment you want or don’t want.
-How comfortable you want to be.
-How you want people to treat you.
Five Wishes is available in 23 different languages and meets the legal requirements in 42 states and is useful in all 50. For a presentation on FIVE WISHES call 352-527-2020 or 866-642-0962

Introducing Comfort Blue

On October 1, 2010, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Florida, Inc. (BCBSF) implemented Comfort Blue, a voluntary program for hospice care management. BCBSF members enrolled in Comfort Blue are protected from benefit exhaustion. Participation in the program allows BCBSF to waive the benefit lifetime maximum (LTM) as written in the member’s contract benefits. However for some members, the group administrator must approve benefit LTM waiver when the member enrolls in Comfort Blue. Hospice care services remain covered for these members for the duration of care if the member remains engaged in our hospice case management program.

Comfort Blue was designed for members who have chosen hospice care and want to take advantage of the services offered by BCBSF’s personal case managers. Our case managers collaborate with the doctor, hospice provider and the member to:

  • improve quality of life through symptom and pain management,
  • ensure shared decision-making with a full understanding of member goals and wishes,
  • reduce unwanted and unnecessary hospital admissions and trips to the emergency room, and
  • increase member and family satisfaction, and ease concern or worries about benefits.

Referring your patients to the Comfort Blue program is simple. Contact our Case Management Department at

(800) 955-5692 and select option 4. To help you learn more about this new program, we developed a brief five minute audio presentation. Click here to view the presentation.