“Health Care Directive is a document prepared to write healthcare choices and appoint a trustworthy person to make decisions. It is effective if a person is not able to decide or choose.”
Although death is unavoidable, many of us still find it hard to accept that we will not live forever. We avoid making plans for our end-of-life treatment. However, reaching end-of-life decisions early on will relieve tension in your family and increase your future quality of life. Discussing and drafting an Advance Health Care Directive with your family is the best way to ensure that your future medical care decisions are made per your wishes. Thus, you can appoint an agent and record your wishes about your health care with the help of the Health Care Directive.
What is Advance Health Care Directive?
Many people assume Advance Health Care Directive is for old age. Thus, if they are a young or middle-aged citizen, they do not need a health care directive. However, you are wrong if you think the same. In some circumstances, as daunting as it sounds, you can feel terminally ill.
An Advance Health Care Directive is a written legal document with your wishes recorded. Those wishes are related to health care. You must select a healthcare agent to fulfill those wishes when you cannot do it yourself. For instance, later in life, you may encounter a situation where you might not be able to decide for yourself. In that case, usually, some doctors announce that you cannot make decisions. Thus, Advance Health Care Directive gives you the liberty to decide beforehand.
AHCD also allows you to choose a person as a proxy. That person can make decisions for your health-related issues.
Is Advance Health Care Directive Necessary?
It can be challenging to speak about the type of care and treatment you want if you cannot make those choices for yourself. While certain aspects of your future are out of your control, such as an accident or serious illness, you can prepare for the unexpected and ensure that your wishes are fulfilled. You should brace for the unexpected and keep making choices by filling out an Advance Health Care Directive.
Moreover, in case of unforeseen illness or injuries, think about how peaceful you will be to know that you have made important decisions. If you cannot write Advance Health Care Directive, you will still receive the proper treatment. However, it might not be according to your desires. Also, writing a health care directive does not mean you lose the right to decide. You can still make decisions for yourself until you can do so.
On the other hand, if you are terminally ill or injured, your loved ones have to make difficult choices. In such situations, AHCD can save them from painful situations. Thus, they will be aware of your choices and how you want your treatment to be done. Your loved one will not feel guilty about making tough decisions.
What Are The 3 Types of Advance Directives?
What are the three types of advance directives? There are 3 types that you might be interested to know. So, if you have a question, what are the three types of advance directives? Those are:
Instructions in Detail/Living Will
An advanced health care directive helps you to give your agent clear instructions on how you want to be handled if you become incapacitated. You can instruct about avoiding a certain type of medical treatment in AHCD.
Power of Attorney
You can grant power of attorney to a trusted loved one, allowing them to make treatment and health care decisions for you.
A Mixture of the Two
You nominate someone and grant them power of attorney, but you also give them clear guidance regarding the care and treatment you want.
How to Write an Advance Health Care Directive?
Opting to write an AHCD can be a tough choice. Still, making a document to be clear about your healthcare choices is important. There are certain legal aspects that you must know before creating a health care directive. Thus, you might include some choices like:
- How do you want your healthcare to be paid?
- Where do you want to stay in case of terminal illness?
- Who can make healthcare choices for you if you cannot make them?
- Is there any insurance that can cover your healthcare expenses?
- Are there some medical treatments that you want to avoid?
- Are medical treatments not acceptable for you due to cultural or religious reasons?
Now, since you have decided on the following things, you are almost ready to create your healthcare document. Yet, it is a challenging phase, and you must consider discussing it with your family members and an advance directive attorney. Thus, to start writing an AHCD, you must follow these steps:
Get Health Care Directive Form
You can start by getting a health care directive form from your state. You can choose a general form as well. However, you must consider talking to an advance directive attorney to discuss and understand this form thoroughly.
Choose your Health Care Agent
You can appoint a person to make decisions for yourself. At this point, you must think deeply and discuss it with your family. Your healthcare agent must be of legal age, must be competent to make such decisions, and can be a professional. You can also let your healthcare agent know about your specific wishes.
Fulfill Legal Requirements
Even if you are not filling out the form provided by your state, your wishes will be honored. However, to make your legally acceptable, there are some legal requirements. Those requirements are:
- AHCD must have a date and have your signature.
- You must notarize your document or sign it in front of witnesses.
- Clear instructions about your health care agent.
- AHCD must clearly define the type of medical treatment you want or do not want to receive.
- Instructions about organ donation or if you are opting out from it.
- Instruction about your funeral.
- Avoiding some specific mental health treatments.
You might consider a few more things before writing a health care directive. Thus, contact an advance directive attorney and discuss your healthcare wishes.
Few things that you must consider before writing your AHCD
You should have a few things in mind before writing your health care directive. You might want to discuss it in detail with an advance directive attorney. Some of them are:
- Your agent can not be a health care provider unless they are a family member or you have some specific reasons.
- You cannot request treatment that is not available or reasonable.
Living Will Vs. Advance Directive: Is there any Difference?
Suppose you are considering Living Will Vs. An advance directive, or what is the difference between them, you are at the right place. There are often confused and cannot be understood clearly. However, in simple words, a living will come under the classification of the Advance Directive.
To explain further, a living will allow you to spell out all the medical procedures you want to receive. It also allows you to write any medical procedures you wish to avoid. Thus, it is a legal document addressing wishes related to your medical treatments and procedures. You might want to include details about dialysis, organ donation, etc. In this document, it is preferable to consult a professional for legal and medical advice.
Advanced health care directive includes a living will or simple health care directive. However, it states an agent or power of attorney for you. Depending on your location, you can include details of the health care agent, health care proxy, and patient’s advocate.
Myths of Advanced Healthcare Directives
Studies have shown that many people have various misconceptions about advanced healthcare directives. The truth is that without the right knowledge, you will lack understanding about your rights and limitations. This section will explain some advanced healthcare directive myths people have believed in for years.
A Valid Will Is Required For Advanced Healthcare Directives To Become Active
This is incorrect in any way, as doctors can stop a treatment they no longer consider necessary. A will isn’t required for this to happen. For instance, a physician may decide to discuss with your loved ones or family members for the next line of action. Most people who have decided to explore the option of advanced healthcare directives do not have the will.
For An Advanced Directive To Be Considered Valid, The Statutory Form From Your State Is Required
Again, this isn’t correct because many states do not require any form. What you should expect are some signing formalities or witnessing requirements. In most cases, you will notice that state forms are general in terms of instructions. That is to say. They do not apply to your problem. Even in a situation with a special form, your doctor is still expected to adhere to the instructions regarding your treatment wishes.
Doctors Are Always Expected To Follow Advanced Healthcare Directives Since They Are Legally Binding
To many people, doctors are always expected to act in line with advanced health directives since they are legally binding. There are two things that you must take note of here. The first is that such directives are not legally binding. The other is that doctors are not always expected to follow your treatment wishes. For instance, if your wishes do not align with the professional ethics of a doctor, he will not carry them out.
Naming A Healthcare Proxy Can Limit My Powers To Make Decisions
This is another false assumption that many people have about healthcare directives. Provided you are competent, and of sound mind, your decisions can override that of a named proxy. Please note that in a situation whereby there is a disagreement between members of your family and doctors, a guardian appointed by the court may become the next option.
There is no need to get confused about your rights and limitations after having a proxy named. It is all about discussing your preferences, values, and goals with such a person. This can help to avoid conflict of interest.
Healthy People Don’t Need Any Kind of Healthcare Directives
One thing you must know is that life is full of uncertainties. For instance, even though you are 100% healthy, you are still recommended to consider a healthcare agent. This helps in case you start experiencing any illness or accident. Appointing such a person doesn’t mean you will time soon or can’t make decisions concerning your health. It is only a way of preparing for any kind of unexpected event.
Should you Hire an Advance Directive Attorney?
The simple answer is it is not necessary but preferable. Advance Directive Attorney can help you through different types of complex documents. They can tell you some legal requirements and other legal aspects. You cannot make mistakes in this particular decision. Hence, hiring an advance directive attorney with the right skills is necessary—contact Attorneys Real Estate Group for the advance directive attorney.
Advance Directive Attorney Near Me
While the substance of advanced health care directives and living wills is not difficult, it should be carefully considered. Attorneys Real Estate Group will provide more detail on health care directives and estate planning. These are difficult subjects to discuss, but our caring and professional Advance Directive Attorney will guide you through different situations. Also, they can draft an advanced healthcare directive that represents your values and wishes.
Our team has considerable knowledge of all estate planning and healthcare directive aspects. Our advance directive attorney can guide you through the health care directive form. We work hard to show the best possible solution to our clients. We know some complex terms like an understanding of living will vs.. advance directive.