What is something that every person aged 18 and up needs? A health care directive! Also known as an advance directive. Now some of you may be thinking one of two things…
- What in the world is a Health Care Directive
- Why do I need one?
Well, let me answer both questions in one fell swoop.
At some point in your life you may need one. It’s one of those things many people don’t think about, but in trying times wished that they did. And for those that do have one in place, boy were they grateful!
Advanced health care directives are documents that come in different types. They can be in the form of health care power of attorney, mental health care power of attorney, living wills, HIPAA authorizations, and do not resuscitate orders.
These documents say who can make important life decisions on your behalf, and can spell out what decisions you want those people to make.
If you don’t have an advanced health care directive the state has provisional laws that will determine who has priority and the say in your wellbeing.
Oftentimes that is parents and siblings. There are obviously many situations where family members are not the best choice, but unless it’s in writing they will be the ones calling the shots.
In some situations even proxy agents do not have the power to make decisions about mental health in-patient care consent or withdraw or start life sustaining treatments once they have begun. The only way they would be able to is by going to court.
In the event that something happens to you, it’s likely a stressful time not only for you, but also for those who care and love you. Make the potential situation easier on yourself and your loved one by putting a health care directive in place.
If you need a hand in putting one together, we’d love to help. Just give us a call or send us an email and we can walk you through the process.