Community members are invited to watch Being Mortal, the highly regarded PBS documentary on how to change the way we deal with life-limiting illness, and be part of a national discussion that explores how doctors and community members can better help people with advance care planning and initiating difficult discussions about end-of-life wishes.

Interested community members, caregivers, nurses, physicians and other healthcare providers are welcome to attend the free video screenings and discussions held on Wednesday, June 15, from 3:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. at St. Mary’s Saccomanno Center at 2635 N. 7th Street and Monday, July 18, from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. at Mesa County Central Library on 443 N. 6th Street.

The documentary is based on the best-selling book Being Mortal, written by Atul Gawande, a renowned Boston surgeon and a writer for The New Yorker magazine. The video follows Atul Gawande as he explores the relationships doctors have with patients who are nearing the end of life. The film investigates the practice of caring for the dying, and shows how doctors — himself included — are often remarkably untrained, ill-suited and uncomfortable talking about chronic illness and death with their patients.

HopeWest, St. Mary’s Hospital and Mesa County Libraries are hosting the event with end-of-life care experts from HopeWest leading a discussion after the screening. The discussion is part of a national dialogue centered on family communication, having tough conversations on end-of-life care and planning ahead by completing advance directives.

“This inspiring documentary will help guide people as they begin the very important conversation about end of life health care decisions with those they love,” said Mary Watson, Community Project Coordinator at HopeWest. “People of all ages—from young adults to seniors—will benefit greatly from Gawande’s insights and our panel discussion.”

To get more information about the event contact Mary Watson at (970) 683-4927. Registration is not required. The event is free to attend and open to the community. Light refreshments will be provided.