Tag Archives: end of life

Got questions? Dr. Barile has answers

logoKnowledge is power. Information reduces stress.
Join Dr. David Barile on a weekday to get your questions answered. He sends this invitation: 
Here in NJ we are facing the very real possibility of a shortage of respirators, PPE and ICU beds. Just today we had additional positive tests reported bringing our state’s total cases to 8,825 with 108 deaths. We are working with several of our Coalition partners to address some of the unmet needs.
Toward that end, from Monday 3/30 to Friday 4/24, Goals of Care Coalition of New Jersey (GOCCNJ) will be launching a daily webinar M-F at 1:00pm to help educate people and address their questions regarding POLST and advance directives for the populations at high-risk for complications of COVID-19 (nursing home populations, frail elders, people with underlying medical concerns, etc.) and/or their family decision makers/healthcare proxies. Visit the GOCCNJ website, www.goalsofcare.org, to register for the webinar.

Please share the attached flyer with your networks and let people know this resource is available. We have more information and resources online at our website www.goalsofcare.org. We would be so grateful if you help spread the word!

Many thanks and please stay healthy and safe!


David R. Barile

Founder & Chief Medical Officer
Goals of Care Coalition of New Jersey
webinar flyer

The care they need – the care they want


If any part of health care in New Jersey needs reform, it’s end-of-life healthcare. Patients here are likely to undergo more intensive medical care, in their final days, than in any other state. All this treatment rarely helps the patients; likely it just makes them uncomfortable.

David Barile MD, palliative care specialist, founded NJ GoalsofCare,  a non-profit, to help everyone — lay people and medical people — achieve their goals for this stage of life that is often feared and ignored.  “We’re working to set a new standard by helping healthcare providers, patients, and families make medical decisions that genuinely reflect a person’s wishes,” says Barile. He created educational materials and documents to ensure that patients would receive the care they need and no less, and the care they want and no more.

In our family, we have had examples of too much care, too little care, and just the right amount of care. The “just the right amount,” no coincidence, was supervised by Dr. Barile. 


Now his small organization has coalesced into The Goals of Care Coalition of New Jersey. Its partners are healthcare providers, government agencies, and community organizations.  Founding members are an impressive list:  NJ Hospital Association, the Medical Society of NJ, the NJ Association of Health Plans, the Health Care Association of NJ, HQSI, the Home Care & Hospice Association of NJ, LeadingAge NJ, the NJ Health Care Quality Institute, the NJ Palliative Care APN Consortium, the VNA Health Group, Samaritan Healthcare & Hospice, the NJ Association of Health Care Social Workers and the NJ Association of Mental Health and Addiction Agencies.

From Robert Wood Johnson Foundation it has a one-year grant, $195,000, to address disparities in access to palliative care for minority populations living in New Jersey. It also landed a $75,000 matching grant, and here’s where I — and maybe you — come in. I’m donating, and I invite you to contribute. You can do it through a Facebook fundraising page or directly through GoalsofCareNJ website. 

Talking about the end-of-life does not come easily! That’s why I believe both the medical people and lay people need the GoalsofCare materials.

Bottom line: When it’s time to say goodbye to someone you love, it’s such a comfort to know that the caregivers are following the patient’s wishes.





Sustaining an unsustainable life: where was Paul’s POLST form?


Many Princeton people will remember Paul Scharf. He pushed carts at McCaffrey’s, he came to the HUB, a Saturday night social activity at Princeton United Methodist Church, he attended services there.

In Richard K. Rein’s U.S. 1 Newspaper column this week is an account of an end-of-life experience that should NOT be happening. Paul could have been encouraged to sign an Advanced Care Directive (available at Princeton Senior Resource Center) or, better, to sign a POLST form.  It could have prevented his medical team at a nursing home from having to sustain his unsustainable life. A POLST form (Practitioner Orders for Life Sustaining Treatment) is not required by law, but in New Jersey it is strongly recommended. 

Paul can no longer talk to tell what he wants.