When it comes to end of life care are you prepared? I know the reality is who is ever actually prepared for when that time comes. But what I really mean is have you put advanced directives in place? And have you had the conversations you need to have with your loved ones?

If you are staring at the screen thinking to yourself that you are not even sure where to get started, then you have come to the right place! This is a place to come to, to learn how to empower your legacy. 

Believe me there is a lot to learn on this journey, but you don’t have to go on it alone. Here at Empowered Legacy Planning we are committed to your journey and helping you all that we can, which includes sharing what we know!

In this post I will be going over two different kinds of advanced directives that come into play during your end of life care. Those two documents are Living Wills and Do Not Resuscitate orders. Many people wonder if they are the same thing, and if they need both. Let’s discuss!

A Living Will is a statement that goes into effect when an individual is terminally ill, in a vegetative state, or in an irreversible coma. In this statement the individual should have outlined their wishes for end of life care such as if they would like to be kept on life support, and for how long, if they would like to be organ donors, and what organs they would like to have donated. 

In Arizona in order for a Living Will to be valid it must either be notarized or signed by a witness other than a family member that is at least 18 years of age.

As for a DNR order, this is a document that emergency medical personnel use to determine if someone wishes to not be resuscitated. A DNR is not a choice for everyone.

In Arizona a DNR must be printed on orange paper and signed by a witness and a medical provider to be considered valid. If the document isn’t witnessed and signed by all parties and on orange paper it is not considered valid.

For some individuals they choose to only put in place a Living Will. Whereas other individuals may choose to have a DNR as well. For those that choose to not have a DNR it is important to outline in their Living Will if there is ever a point that they wish to have a DNR put in place.

Creating these documents does mean thinking and making some tough end of life decisions, but ultimately making these decisions sooner rather than later makes things go a lot easier and smoother for yourself and for your loved ones. 

Some things to think about when making your decisions is taking into account quality of life vs being a burden. And if you have religious beliefs taking into consideration your institution’s teachings. We all have different values and it’s important to communicate them with your loved ones.

If you learned something new please be sure to share this with a loved one. And if you have any questions, please be sure to reach out.