Are you having back pain with any of the following?

  • Severe pain, weakness or tingling in your leg(s).
  • Difficulty stopping urination or loss of control of bladder or bowels.
  • Unexplained fever, nausea or vomiting.
  • A history of cancer or unexplained weight loss.

We understand that you are experiencing one or more of the health issues that might be impacting your back pain.

We recommend that you discuss these health issues with your doctor before proceeding with this program.

Once you are cleared by your doctor to do this program, we hope it helps you find relief from your back pain.

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Healthy living can help you age well and maintain your mental agility, physical strength, and overall vitality. It's never too late to begin taking better care of yourself. We offer resources and information especially for older adults.

My Care: Advanced Steps Life Care Planning [Read/Print full article]


As our lives change, so do our goals and plans. As we age or become ill, the decisions we make for our health care become particularly important. My Care: Advanced Steps is a service for people who are frail, elderly, or those nearing the end of life due to a serious illness.

Together, we discuss your goals for future medical care. We support you and your health care agent as you make important choices about your care.

During a My Care conversation, you:

  • Discuss your values and beliefs.
  • Explore your goals for care.
  • Prepare your health care agent to communicate on your behalf, if needed.
  • Make informed, specific; and timely decisions about life-sustaining treatment options.

Your written plan guides your medical care. It includes treatment decisions that match your personal goals.

My Care Conversation

With My Care, you plan ahead for the type of care you want to receive in the last weeks, months, or years of your life. We encourage you to plan now so you have the energy and time to make decisions about what you want.

Depending on your specific condition, you may need to make decisions about starting, changing, or stopping medications and treatments. 

What To Expect

My Care helps you explore what living well means to you. Together, we discuss your priorities so that your medical care matches your personal values.

We will also discuss common medical interventions, such as:

  • Cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR)
  • Assisted breathing (including ventilation)
  • Artificial nutrition, including fluids (hydration)

We help you consider the benefits and burdens of each intervention and how they relate to your desired outcomes. This way, you can tell your agent what you would or would not want. 

Your Written Plan

At the end of a My Care conversation, we can help you prepare a written plan. You may identify your preferences in one or both of the following forms:

  • Advance Health Care Directive
  • Physicians Order for Life-Sustaining Treatment (POLST)

These documents are then placed in your medical record. We encourage you to share your written plan with your agent and your doctors. 

Your Next Steps

If you or someone you love would benefit from a My Care conversation, ask your doctor or care manager.

When appropriate, a skilled facilitator will arrange to meet with you and your health care agent. Our facilitators are often social workers or nurses. The My Care: Advanced Steps appointment generally lasts about 60 minutes. 

Related Health Tools:

Interactive Programs

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If you have an emergency medical condition, call 911 or go to the nearest hospital. An emergency medical condition is any of the following: (1) a medical condition that manifests itself by acute symptoms of sufficient severity (including severe pain) such that you could reasonably expect the absence of immediate medical attention to result in serious jeopardy to your health or body functions or organs; (2) active labor when there isn't enough time for safe transfer to a Plan hospital (or designated hospital) before delivery, or if transfer poses a threat to your (or your unborn child's) health and safety, or (3) a mental disorder that manifests itself by acute symptoms of sufficient severity such that either you are an immediate danger to yourself or others, or you are not immediately able to provide for, or use, food, shelter, or clothing, due to the mental disorder. This information is not intended to diagnose health problems or to take the place of specific medical advice or care you receive from your physician or other health care professional. If you have persistent health problems, or if you have additional questions, please consult with your doctor. If you have questions or need more information about your medication, please speak to your pharmacist. Kaiser Permanente does not endorse the medications or products mentioned. Any trade names listed are for easy identification only.

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