Charades is a game in which health care professionals, patients, and families discuss the very difficult topic of code status through a series of pantomimed clues.
Though there is wide variation in charades during family meeting, there are some common features:
- Players are divided into two or more teams (usually the medical team versus the patient/family)
- Scraps of paper are used to write the answers to be performed, such as "code status" or "DNR")
- No silent mouthing of words allowed
- No death rattles allowed
- Pantomiming is used to get teammates to guess the right answer, which is often hospice
- Everyone gets one turn
- If the patient codes, then his or her turn is forfeited
- A timer is used to ensure that other health care professionals, patients, and families can play
- If patient goes to hospice, the all teams win
- Number of fingers held up indicates number of milligrams of Dilaudid (Hydromorphone)
- Tugging at earlobe means either "otitis media"
- Pointing at eye means "I" or "remember your yearly eye exam"