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Posts Tagged ‘Living Will’

Topics to Discuss with Your Health Care Agent

A health care agent is a person you appoint to make medical decisions on your behalf if you are incapacitated or unable to make any decisions. A Living Will (Advanced Directive) expresses your wishes about your health care including, but not limited to, resuscitation, life sustaining treatments (respirator, feeding tube, etc.) and withholding / withdrawing of life sustaining treatments. The Living Will is only effective when you are terminally ill or unconscious and unable to communicate your wishes.           When it comes to making decisions regarding end of life issues, do you know your wishes or have you communicated those…

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When is further medical treatment futile?

It's one of the toughest questions patients and their loved ones can discuss with physicians: When is further medical treatment futile? The conversation can become even more difficult if patients or their families disagree with health care providers' recommendations on end-of-life care. Early, clear communication between patients and their care teams, choosing health care agent (Surrogate) to represent patients, by signing a Medical Power of Attorney and Living Will, can help avoid conflicts. "Health care professionals in the United States have struggled with the importance of maintaining patient autonomy while attempting to practice under the guidance of treatments based on…

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Do you need a living will and a medical POA?

A living will can't cover every possible situation. Therefore, you might also want a medical POA to designate someone to be your health care agent. This person will be guided by your living will but has the authority to interpret your wishes in situations that aren't described in your living will. A medical POA also might be a good idea if your family is opposed to some of your wishes or is divided about them, states the Mayo Clinic. Choosing a health care agent Choosing a person to act as your health care agent is possibly the most important part…

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What is a Living Will?

Living wills are documents that give instructions regarding treatment if the individual becomes terminally ill or is in a persistent vegetative state and is unable to communicate his or her own instructions. The living will states under what conditions life-sustaining treatment should be terminated. If an individual would like to avoid life-sustaining treatment when it would be hopeless, he or she needs to draw up a living will. Like a health care agent, a living will takes effect only upon a person's incapacity. Also, a living will is not set in stone; an individual can always revoke it at a…

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There’s no doubt that many Baby Boomers are planning for the future …but even the savviest among them may overlook one crucial element in their estate plan: a letter of final instruction.

If you’re a member of the Baby Boomer generation, there’s a good chance you have not done even the most basic of estate planning. In fact, only 56 percent of you have a will, according to a 2011 survey by Rocket Lawyer. So, if you have covered that base, give yourself a well-deserved pat on the back … but not too heartily. As SmartMoney recently pointed out, most people overlook another crucial element in their estate plan: a letter of final instruction. The letter of final instruction is a non-legal document that guides your family through important tasks after your…

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Estate Planning For Women (And the Men Who Love Them)

In this article, Forbes’s Deborah L. Jacobs offers an expansive look into the unique position of women in estate law, especially given current developments as of last December, and the unique necessity for women to practice proper estate planning. Among Americans 65 and older, 42 percent of women, but just 14 percent of men are widowed. Women’s longer life expectancy, combined with their tendency to marry older mates and their lower lifetime earnings means they are far more likely to see their living standards compromised in retirement if proper estate planning isn’t done. The article includes a gallery of the…

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Resolving Conflicts between Co-agents on a Power of Attorney

When someone asks you to serve as their agent, giving you power of attorney, you may feel quite honored or flattered at first. But after the weight of that responsibility sinks in, you may (and should) have some serious questions. Having power of attorney over another can be an awesome responsibility and may be too great a burden for just one person. For this reason, an individual may choose to select more than one agent to act in their place should they become incapacitated. But two heads are not always better than one. What do you do if you are…

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MORE TOPICS TO DISCUSS WITH YOUR HEALTH CARE AGENT

o   Would you want the following medical treatments?   Kidney Dialysis (if kidneys not working) CPR (used if heart stops working) Respirator (unable to breathe) Artificial nutrition (unable to eat food) Artificial hydration (unable to drink fluids)   o  Imagine that you are in a permanent coma and dependent on a feeding tube. Would your medical decisions be guided by any particular religious beliefs or spiritual values?   o  Are some conditions worse than death? If you are housebound, in severe discomfort or pain most of the time, would you want medical treatments to keep you alive? o  Discuss your…

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5 TOPICS TO DISCUSS WITH YOUR HEALTH CARE AGENT

A health care agent is a person you appoint to make medical decisions on your behalf if you are incapacitated or unable to make any decisions. A Living Will (Advanced Directive) expresses your wishes about your health care including, but not limited to, resuscitation, life sustaining treatments (respirator, feeding tube, etc.) and withholding / withdrawing of life sustaining treatments. The Living Will is only effective when you are terminally ill or unconscious and unable to communicate your wishes. When it comes to making decisions regarding end of life issues, do you know your wishes or have you communicated those wishes…

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