Carol Folsom has discussed end-of-life options in countless settings — at farmer’s markets, libraries, club meetings, outside local businesses, and even at a funeral at the request of the bereaved family. Last year, her goal was to get Colorado citizens to sign a petition to get the Colorado End of Life Options Act on the 2016 ballot, which she and hundreds of others successfully did. Now, her goal has shifted to ensuring access to medical aid in dying, which means a different strategy and a new outlook on volunteering with Compassion & Choices.
Carol is uniquely equipped to reach out to the medical community, with more than 30 years of experience in the healthcare industry, first in social work and then in information technology. She’s familiar with many health systems in Colorado and works with C&C staff to help medical facilities and doctors understand and abide by the new law. Recently, she spoke to 30 industry professionals, including doctors, nurses, aides and more at a hospice in Colorado Springs, where she lives. Her outlook? “Why wouldn’t this be part of the wonderful care you already offer patients to help them through the end of their life? I would love to see that change.”
Carol isn’t just concerned with helping her fellow Coloradans access medical aid in dying. She also wants to help states across the country protect or authorize this end-of-life option. Carol and other Colorado volunteers wrote to their senators, Michael Bennet and Cory Gardner, to ask that they support the District of Columbia’s Death with Dignity Act, which is currently under threat by a House appropriations measure to repeal it. She also follows the progress of New York’s bill, where she has family and which is gearing up for a major fight this legislative session.
To get involved as a volunteer with Colorado’s Access Campaign, sign up to volunteer on our website at www.compassionandchoices.org/volunteer.