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What is an advanced healthcare directive?

What is an advanced healthcare directive?

Through an advanced healthcare directive, individuals have the ability to plan for their medical care in advance. As individuals grow older, they may want to plan this out for their end of life care. If they know how they feel about their end of life care, they can record information on how they want to be treated. This can inform someone else of their wishes, causing them to make the right decisions for the sickly individual. These individuals have the ability to prepare for situations that can be unforeseen by creating an advanced healthcare directive. If the individual with the directive were to become incapacitated and unable to make medical decisions for themselves, their wishes will be recorded in their directive. With this information, doctors and medical professionals can treat patients according to their wishes.

How can a living will be useful?

A living will can be useful to plan for medical decisions in the future. Information in a living will can include your stance on life support and other medical practices for yourself when you are unable to share this with a doctor. If you want to receive life support in situations when it is deemed necessary by a medical professional, you can write that in your living will to inform doctors to use life support measures. You can also choose to refuse life support measures and doctors will abide by the decision in your living will. When you are unable to make choices at a time when your are incapable and your health is in danger, this document can provide information that doctors need to treat you. This document can protect your rights and wishes since it has them listed for others to read. Doctors will make sure to follow this or else legal action can be taken against them for failing to fulfill your wishes.

During these situations, it may also be useful to have a power of attorney. This individual can make decisions for you about your wishes that are stated in your directive and living will. They can be given as much power as you wish to give them. A durable healthcare power of attorney can make decisions for you when you are unable to do so, but this only gives them control over medical decisions when you are unable to make them for yourself.

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