A good quality of life starts with a good talk. We can’t plan when a medical emergency or serious illness is going to happen, but we can plan ahead by talking to those who matter most about what matters most to us if we became seriously ill.

In 2014, the Quality Institute created the Conversation of Your Life (COYL) program to develop a community conversation in a culturally sensitive and accessible way around the kind of care we want to receive and how we can plan ahead. Now there are 15 counties across the state that convene county task forces and host educational community events, including: Atlantic, Bergen, Burlington, Camden, Essex, Gloucester, Hudson, Hunterdon, Mercer, Middlesex, Monmouth, Morris, Ocean, Somerset, and Union Counties.

Get started by viewing our COYL tri-fold pamphlet below to better understand why these conversations are so important. These easy to use documents include a checklist to help you think about and communicate what matters most to you, useful terms, resources, and good books and films on the topic. We can and should get the care we want- no more, no less.


Download Brochure in English  Download Brochure in Spanish  Download Brochure in Korean Download Brochure in Polish


COYL Resources

We encourage you to follow the steps below to ensure the care you receive is aligned with your goals, values, and preferences. Click on each step to find valuable resources such as webinars, one-pagers, digital tools, and more to help you through these often-difficult conversations.

Step 1: Consider What is Most Important to You

View these resources to help you consider what is most important to you.

Preparing for the Unexpected One-Pager

COYL & NJDBP Wellness Brochure

Book Suggestions Film Suggestions

Watch a webinar to understand why these conversations are important and what options are available to you.

Being Prepared Medically and Legally

Being Prepared: Advance Care Planning at Home, in Your Community, and with your Health Care Provider Medically and Legally

Having the Conversation: The Heart of the Veteran

Attend a live in-person or virtual event.

Find a COYL event near you

Step 3: Create a Written Plan and Share It

Fill out an advance directive form to ensure your wishes are known and followed.

Five Wishes is a complete approach to discussing and documenting your care and comfort choices.
Five Wishes Advance Directive

Whether you have an existing advance care plan or want to create one from scratch, MyDirectives has you covered.
Create or upload a digital advance directive on My Directive

The Practitioner Orders for Life Sustaining Treatment, or POLST form, ensures those with a life-limiting illness get the care they want. In some states, this form may be called a MOLST form.
New Jersey POLST

New York MOLST

Pennsylvania POLST

Additional Resources

COYL Task Forces By County

Each county listed below has its own county-wide task force led and run by local trusted community members. Task Force members collaborate to develop, promote, and execute local programming. As a Task Force member, you are part of an essential group of individuals organizing in your community to help people better understand the benefits of advance care planning and the choices available to them.

We are actively recruiting Task Force members for each county. If you are interested in learning more about how you or your community can join the conversation, please contact Dapa Wilcox, Community Coordinator, at 609-452-5980 or dwilcox@njhcqi.org.

COYL Task Forces By County


Jerry Barberio – Town of Hammonton
Madeline Bauer – Holey Redeemer Home Care & Hospice
Francis Blee – AtlantiCare
Tammi Cooper – AtlantiCare
Maureen Deely – Shore Medical Center
Stephen DiDonato – Mayor of Hammonton
Trish Donio – AtlantiCare Afterschool Program
Brooke Dowd – Town of Hammonton
Theresa Fahy – AtlantiCare
Anne Filazzola – Unite Here Health
Victor Gazzarra – Bayada
April Gall – Angelic Hospice
Paige Gebhart – Continuum LTC, Galloway Health Center
Lisa Hatrak – New Jersey Action Coalition
Christine Hayek – AtlantiCare
Audrey Heist – AtlantiCare
Carol Hutchinson – Journey Hospice
Nicole Keefer – Diocese of Camden
Dana Lisicki – AtlantiCare
Terri Loncor
Heather Matis – Parsels Funeral Home
Stacey Merkh – Centers Health Care
Susan Miller – Galloway Health Center
Nicole Montone – Deptford Center
Effie Murphy – Alzheimer’s Association, Delaware Valley Chapter
Brooke Neary – Town of Hammonton
Lindsey Petrosh-Delia – Hammonton Center
Nancy Powell – AtlantiCare
Liz Readeau – AtlantiCare
Heather Santabarbara – AtlantiCare
Howard Smith – Hammonton Presbysterian Church
Glen Stoll – AtlantiCare
Katherine Stys – AtlantiCare
Lorraine Thayer – AtlantiCare
Lori Thompson – Compassus Hospice


Lani Allison – Regional Cancer Care Associates

Tracy Amauer – Holy Name Medical Center

Nancy Ames – Jewish Home Family

Jessica Arroyo – Woodcrest Health Center

Denise Arzoomanian – Englewood Health

Ari Berger – Holy Name Medical Center

Lisa Blumer – Holy Name Medical Center

Lisa Bontemps – Westwood for All Ages

Dawn Cetrulo – Ridgewood Health Officer

Hee Choi – Holy Name Medical Center

Joy Chung – Family Touch

Jose Contreras – Hackensack University Medical Center

Samantha Corvino – Hackensack Meridian Health

Danielle Cinnante – Valley Health System

Colette Cummings – Valley Health System

Jason Dale – Bergen County Surrogate’s Office

Katherine DeMarco – Hackensack Meridian Health

Joseph DeSalco – Rutherford Borough

Diane Didio – Oradell Borough

Nancy DiGangi – VITAS

Dierdre Dillon – Ramsey

Michael Dressler – Bergen County

Theresa Ebel – Hackensack Meridian Health

Carol Silver Elloitt – Jewish Home Family

Mary Felicia – Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Jersey

Frederik Golz – State Office of LTC

Maryann Graham – Virtua Medical Group

Shari Haber – Great Goodbyes

Hercules Invictus – Invictus

Christine Kim – Holy Name Medical Center

Sunniya Kahn – Hackensack Meridian Health

Euine Kang – JK Communications

Lori Kayne – Norris McLaughlin

Marla Klein – Bergen County Department of Health

Robyn Kohn – Alzheimer’s Association

Kathy Kuzma – North Jersey Villages, Inc.

Susan Linzey – Hackensack Meridian Health

Linda Lohsen – Holy Name Medical Center

Naomi McDermott – Jewish Home Family

Lynn McVey – NJII

Julie Marallo – Tenafly Library

Michelle Merchant – Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Jersey

Judith Migliaccio – Paramus Board of Health

Jodi Murphy – Westwood for All Ages

Lillian Negron-Vasquez – Hackensack University Medical Center

Peggy Niederer – Bergen County Interfaith Council

Evelyn Olsen – Hand in Hand Connections

Ed Piehler – Northvale Borough

Noreen Rathgeber – VNA at Barnabas Health Hospice

Martial Raymond – Regional Cancer Care Associates

Mark Rooney

Peter Rustin – Tenafly Borough

Norman Schmelz – Bergenfield Township

Anne Schneider – Paramus Borough

Shana Siegel – Norris McLaughlin

Kathleen Smole – Valley Hospital

Shelley Steiner – Alzheimer’s Association

Ann Subrizi – Town of New Milford

Jeff Topfer – Tenafly Borough

Carol Trop – Tenafly Borough

Anna Wang – Holy Name Medical Center

Eddie Weiner – Always Best Care

Joanne Wendolowski – Hackensack Meridian Health

Steve Yang – Neighbor Plus


Sarah Adelman – NJ Department of Human Services

Mary Campagnolo – Virtua

Beth Cohen – Virtua

Ranjna Das – Burlington County Library System

Gayle Dell’Oro – VITAS

Linda Hughes – Burlington County Freeholder

Robert Keltos – Rothamel & Associates, LLC

Angela Maydman – Caring Hands Hospice

Effie Murphy – Alzheimer’s Association, Delaware Valley Chapter

Mary Anne O’Brien – Burlington County Surrogate

Bill O’Byrne

Joanne Rosen – Samaritan

Nicole Staltmayer – VNA Health Group

May Thomas – TPH Scott Counsel

Frank Urbano – Amerihealth NJ

Patricia Ware – Virtua

Melanie Williams – VNA Moorestown


Cheryl Austin – Camden County Surrogate’s Office

Charlene Albert

Ann Biondi – Health Department

Judy Calabrese – Gloucester Township

Shawn Carter – Inspira Health Network

Sue Cooke – Samaritan

Linda Davis – Harvest Church, Inc.

Lina Gefter – Caring Hands Hospice

Michelle Gentek-Mayer – Camden County Surrogate

Steve Goldfine – Samaritan

Sharon Heath – Inspira Health Network

Jane Knapp – Right at Home

Ray Lopez – Cornerstone Foundation of Hope

Tanya McKeown – Jefferson Health

Andrea McManus – Gloucester Township

Caynne Mandes

Kelly Mathews – Gloucester Township

Marie Matz – The Foundations at Cedar Parke

Mayor Dave Mayer – Gloucester Township

Diana Mears Ritz – Moorestown VNA

Angela Meydman – Caring Hands Hospice

Anna Miller – VITAS

Suzanne Moore – Camden County Surrogate’s Office

Assemblywoman Gabriela Mosquera – Gloucester Township

Effie Murphy – Alzheimer’s Association

Victor Murray – Camden Coalition

Joanne Rosen – Samaritan

Neil Rosen – Rowan University

Susan Trotman – Manor Care

Tracey Trotto – American Cancer Society

Frank Urbano – Amerihealth NJ

Chris Waldron – Camden County


Sheree Bennett – Physician

Meredith Blank – Nutley Health Department

Margaret Brodowski – Township of Montclair

Ellen Coughlin – Hackensack Meridian Hospice

Ashley Crews – Township of Montclair

Patricia Cruz – Township of Nutley

Deborah Day – United Way NNJ

Deborah Delvecchio – Chrill Care

Christine Filippini – VNA

Lindsey Herrera – Township of Nutley

Marianne Holler – VNA of Central Jersey

Lori Kayne – Norris McLaughlin

Ellen Koehler – Barnabas Health Home Care & Hospice

Anna Kirschblum

Megan Knight – Barnabas Health

Kim Lewis – Township of Nutley

Caren Martineau – Bevival

Ruth Mayer

Louis Monticchio – VNAHG Barnabas Home Care & Hospice

Isabel Montoya – VNAHG Barnabas Home Care & Hospice

Stacie Newton – Clara Maass Medical Center

Donna Plotnik – Oasis Senior Advisors

Dina Pressel – Township of Montclair

Norren Rathgeber – Barnabas Health Home Care & Hospice

Wanda Rodriguez – Barnabas Health Home Care & Hospice

Cathy Rowe – Township of Maplewood

Marisol Santana – La Casa de Don Pedro

Debra Sheridan – RWJBH/VNA Home Care & Hospice

Shana Siegel – Norris McLaughlin

Tacy Silverberg-Urian – VNA Barnabas Hospice

Katie York – Township of Montclair


Charlene Albert

Diane Bassett – Bayada at Inspira Woodbury

Karen Boucher – West Deptford Public Library

Kevin Elsey – Bayada

Debra Gabrieli

Melody Gray – Inspira Health Network Woodbury

Sherry Gross – Bayada at Inspira Woodbury

Shawn Harris – Inspira Health Network

Sharon Heath – Inspira Health Network Woodbury

Cheryl Karwoski – Inspira Health Network

Jane Knapp

Lauren Koloski – Inspira Health Network

Sandi Lynch – Bayada at Inspira Woodbury

Leona Mather – Gloucester County

Robin Megow – Mullica Hill Library

Mathew Miller – VITAS

Bernadette Murphy – Inspira Health Network

Effie Murphy – Alzheimer’s Association, Delaware Valley Chapter

Gia Ruiz – Inspira Health Network

Hal Russell – Inspira Health Network Woodbury

Mary Anne Serra – CC Medica Hospice

Jen Tomasetti – Angelic Palliative & Hospice Care

Susan Trotman – Manorcare


Ruddys Andrade – CarePoint Health

Andrea Drenzek – Office on Aging, Hudson County Department of Health & Human Services

Joan Eccleston – Jersey City Department of Health & Human Services

Carina Escolastico – Jersey City Department of Health & Human Services

Lazara paz Gonzalea – HQSI

Stacey Flanagan – Jersey City Department of Health & Human Services

Tania Fuentes – CEI

Jennifer May – Secaucus Public Library

Brian Poffel – Office on Aging, Hudson County Department of Health & Human Services

Cristal Soriano – Divine Konektions

Susan Walsh – RWJBH Jersey City Medical Center

Sharnia Williams – RWJBarnabas Health


Susan Bauman – Hunterdon Hospice

Kim Blanda – Hunterdon Regional Community Health

James Curcio

Margaret Doyle – Hunterdon Hospice

Mike Eisenhart – Pro-Activity, Basecamp 31

William Healey – Hunterdon Healthcare Foundation

Heather Koenig

Lisa LaCarruba – Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Jersey

Andrea Medina – Hunterdon Mercer Chronic Disease Coaltion

Shawna Mehall – Hunterdon Hospice

Erinn Nakahara – Hunterdon Hospice

Sara Nelson – Hunterdon Hospice

Don Pinner – Hunterdon Healthcare

Geralyn Prosswimmer – Hunterdon Hospice


Mayor Paul Anzano – Hopewell Township

David Barile – Goals of Care Coalition

Melanie Basil – Scott Bloom Law Office

Marygrace Billek – Mercer County Human Services

Scott Bloom – Scott Bloom Law Office

John Cambria – JC Complete PT

Carol Chamberlain – Lawrence Township

James Chambers – Mercer County

Kathryn Collins – New Jersey Hospital Association

James Cozine – VITAS

MaryJane Darbee – Mercer Home Health Care

George DiFerdinon – Rutgers School of Public Health

Beth Englezon – Jewish Family & Children’s Service of Greater Mercer County

Lori Feldstein – Goals of Care Coalition

Diane Gerofsky – Mercer County Surrogate

JoAnn Groeger

Jeff Grosser – Town of Princeton

Patricia Hall – Trenton Public Library

Deb Hallisey

Kathryn Harris – Princeton Hospice

Janet Hayden – LIFE St. Francis

Aline Holmes – New Jersey Hospital Association

Ann King-Musza – Akin Care Senior Services

Kathy Korwin – Greater Mercer Public Health Partnership

Mayor Liz Lempert – Town of Princeton

Victor Medina – Medina Law Group

Lisa Mihalyi – Holy Redeemer Home Care & Hospice

Liz Muoio

Carol Nicholas – Greater Mercer Public Health Partnership

Eimly Sayed – TCNJ

Linda Schwimmer – New Jersey Health Care Quality Institute

Vikranta Sharma – VNA Health Group

Nancy Sobin

Nicole Staltmayer – Mercer Home Health Care

Ted Taylor – RWJ University Hospital Hamilton

Lisa Thomas – Morris Hall

Julie Willmot – Mercer County

Jessica Winters – Mercer Home Health

Jean Withers – JFK Hospice

Anne Zeman – Hopewell Township


MaryJane Brubaker – HQSI

Amar Bukhari

Miriam Cohen

Susan Delgado-Rodriguez – VITAS

Maureen Erwin – JFK

Christine Fillipini – JFK

Jedidah Gitahi

Kimberly Gittens – American Cancer Society

Tracy Grafton – Haven Hospice at JFK

Renee Haider – Sustainable Jersey

Mathew Hersch – Highland Park

Sherry Johnson – Highland Park Public Library

Jennifer Larsen – Sayreville Public Library

Michele Morgan – Woodbridge Division of Multi-Service Program on Aging

Linda Mundie – The Gardens at Monroe

Cynthia Myers – Wellcare

Patyy Nugent – JFK

Morgan Park

C.L. Quillen – Clark Public Library

Joy Robinson – Piscataway Public Library

Neel Shah

Shira Stern

Kristine Thomson – American Cancer Society

Allison Weitz – JFK

Allison Wisniewski – Woodbridge Twp Division of Multi Services

Jean Withers – JFK


Melissa Alexander

Jeffrey Anderson – Centrastate Medical Center

Maureen Bowe – Monmouth Medical Center

Kristen Coppola – RWJ Medical School

Elizabeth Corsentino – Center for Hope

Debra Cox – Grace Healthcare Services

Sharon Douglas – Freehold Clergy Association

Brandon Elsershaw – Centrastate

Marjorie Forgana – Wellcare

Rosemary Gorman – Monmouth Medical Center

Stephanie Hall – Monmouth University

Christa Hogan – Monmouth University

Jessica Israel – Robert Wood Johnson Barnabas Health

Ryan Killeen

Kathy McKean

Barbara Paskewich – Monmouth University

Katherine Poznanski – Centrastate

Susan Rodriguez – VITAS

Elisa Rossetti – HQSI

Kristen Ruscil – Monmouth Medical Center Southern Campus

Vikranta Sharma – VNA Health Group

Meredith Smith – Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Jersey

Patricia Starke – HMH Ocean Medical Center

Janice Willett – Centrastate


Catherine Abbott – St. Clare’s Hospital

Scott Bradley – Bradley & Son Funeral Homes, LLC

Austin Bremner – Bradley & Son Funeral Homes, LLC

John Crouthamel – Tri-town 55 Plus

Margaret Dolan – VITAS

Mary Donovick – St. Clare’s Hospital

Victoria Fife – Chatham Borough

Brian George

Wendy Long – St. Clare’s Hospital

Linda Melillo – St. Clare’s Hospital

Ron Mowad – Bradley & Son Funeral Homes, LLC

Amy Nealy – NJ Elderlaw Center

Janice Piccolo – Chatham Borough


Adalin Ball – Somerset County Office on Aging and Disability Services

Marcela Dunham – Somerset County Library System

Madelyn English – Bernardsville Library

Francine Hoh – Always Think Comfort Palliative Care

Beth Jameson – Seton Hall

Lori Leotta – Beacon Health Options

Sara Nelson – Hunterdon Hospice

Kristen Schiro – Bridgewater Township

Pauline Seitz – St. Charles Parish

Joan Serpico – Franklin Township Library

Rita Swborowski – Bridgewater Township

Jody Sheppard – VITAS


Valerie Anderson – Baptist Church

Lucy Ankrah – Trinitas

Stephanie Bakis – Berkeley Heights Public Library

Adam Beder – Hackensack Meridian Health JFK

Suzie Crincoli

Lama El Zein – Summit Medical Group

Maureen Erwin – Hackensack Meridian Health JFK

Barry Good – Plainfield

Stacy Kaplan – Center for Hope Hospice

Megan Kociolek – Clark Public Library

Atif Nazir – Plainfield Health Department

JoAnn Pietro – Pietro Law Firm

Michele Schroeder – Hartwyck Cedarbrook

Marsha Senior – Recovery/Prime

Yvette Vieira – Atlantic Health

In 2018, the Quality Institute, with generous support from The Nicholson Foundation, and in consultation with many of our member organizations and subject matter experts, released the End-of-Life Care Strategic Plan for New Jersey. This comprehensive strategic plan focuses on four key avenues to improve end-of-life care in New Jersey: Technology, Payment, Education, and Culture. We hope you will read our plan and join our effort to improve the universal journey each one of us will take one day.


Read Our End-of-Life Care Strategic Plan

Support for this program is made possible in part by The Horizon Foundation for New Jersey