Are you currently dealing with a chronic disease that can potentially render you incapacitated at any given moment? What if that time comes and you won’t be able to speak? Are you ready for that? Have you left your assets and properties to a trust-worthy person? Have you created advance care directives to wills? Most of the time, people overlook the importance of having a will or estate plan. But you should know the impact of having a will. That’s why when you can no longer make health decisions for yourself, having advance care directives will guide your loved ones and doctors in the right direction. In this article, we’re going to walk you through everything you need to know about advance directives and why you should have one.
The Components of an Advance Care Directive
An advance care directive is a legally-binding document. It states how you’d like to be treated when you’re no longer able to make your own health decisions. This statement has two parts:
- Naming a health care proxy, which is someone who can advocate for your care when you may not be able to do so on your own.
- Creating a living will, which states the different types of medical treatment, is essential.
Choosing a Healthcare Proxy
Also known as a ‘healthcare power of attorney,’ this person will be authorised to make healthcare decisions on your behalf. If you’re no longer able to make your own health decisions, this person may assume authority over your medical options. Fill out the paperwork, along with witnesses, and get the forms notarised if needed. You can then proceed to create an advance directive to show you you’d like to become your health care proxy.
Decisions A Health Care Proxy Will Make
Advance care directives to wills will include choosing the health care proxy that you would want to appoint. Once this takes into effect, the healthcare proxy you’ve chosen will make decisions on the following:
- They will have the right to request or decline life-support treatments.
- They will make choices about medical care, including tests, surgery, and medication.
- They will have choices about pain management, including full authority to accept or refuse specific medical procedures.
- They will get to decide your admission to an assisted living facility, hospital, or nursing home.
- They will get to choose where to seek medical treatment, including the right to move you to one medical facility to another.
- They will have the right to see and approve the release of your medical records.
Overall, advance care directives to wills will create an opportunity for you to get the medical attention you need with the help of another person. This can be a family member, a relative, or even a lawyer or legal counsel. For more information about advance care directives, click this link.