When you are signing medical documents, it is important that you fully understand what you are agreeing to and the consequences that will result. Two of the documents that are important to consider in protecting your medical care in the future are an Advanced Health Care Directive, and a Do Not Resuscitate Order (DNR)
Many people do not want to be kept alive under certain circumstances, such as if they are being kept alive solely by machines. A DNR provides your instructions to health care providers that you do not want heroic measures, such as cardiac compression, defibrillation and artificial ventilation, to be used to resuscitate you or keep you alive. A DNR should only be used when you are close to death, and must be signed by a physician. An elderly person who is otherwise healthy and active, should not sign a DNR which would prohibit emergency providers from restoring life in an accident or other health care event.
Health Care Directive
You can appoint another individual to act as a health care agent to make medical decisions on your behalf if you are unable to do so for yourself. Your Advanced Health Care Directive can also give your agent authority to review your medical records. It is crucial that you provide the person you appointed to serve as your agent, your primary doctor and your lawyer with a copy of your health care documents. The Advanced Health Care Directive also allows you to give end of life care instructions if you have a health care event where you are unlikely to survive or recover, or you have a disease which leads to death and you are in the last stages of that disease.
Your Utah Advanced Health Care Directive should include your name, telephone and address and the name, telephone and address of the individual you are appointing as your agent, the name and similar information for an alternate agent, the power and authority being granted to the agent, your signature and witnesses. Having your medical documents witnessed is necessary to establish that you signed the document willingly and that you were of sound mind.
If you are interested in learning more about how to properly plan for your future medical care and end of life decisions, contact us to schedule an appointment.
The Astill Law Office has provided high quality legal services for over 30 years. We specialize in wills, trusts, estate planning, and asset protection. If you have any questions about creating a Trust, Will, or estate planning in general, contact The Astill Law Office at 801-438-8698.