Jeff Lindsay has spent a lifetime in health care as an administrator. But one of his biggest lessons came first-hand when he had to help make end-of-life care decisions for his 94-year-old grandmother. Instead of prolonging her life with additional surgeries and diagnostic tests that could alter the quality of her life, Lindsay and his family put a priority on learning what their grandmother really wanted.

“For me, it was important for us to do everything we could to allow her to live the rest of her days as well as she could and exactly the way that she wanted to,” said Lindsay, currently serving as executive vice president and chief operating officer for Novant Health.

Lindsay and his family quickly realized the importance of having these end-of-life care discussions early – that way when decisions needed to be made, the family would be confident in knowing exactly what their grandmother wanted.

“That’s what I would like to see for all of our patients at Novant Health. That we understand what those choices are, we honor those choices and then we make it possible for them to happen,” Lindsay said.

Novant Health wants every patient’s wishes to be honored. Its Choices and Champions® initiative encourages patients to choose a health care “champion,” or someone they know will stand in their corner when they can’t speak up for themselves, and think about other medical choices they may face in the future.

The goal is to provide resources for patients to start conversations with their family members, understand their care options and make those decisions now – so that their wishes are clear to their doctors and, most importantly, their family when the time comes.

Through Choices and Champions, Novant Health provides planning tools like a guide to paperwork and instructions on how to ensure your decisions will be honored by doctors and loved ones. For more information, visit