Preparing for the end of your life is an essential task you may want to consider if you reside in California and want to help ensure your needs and wishes are met. Creating an advance directive is one of the elements associated with this endeavor. It’s a legal document outlining the health care treatments you’d like to receive if you are unable to communicate them directly.
Creating an advance directive
Filling out the California Advance Health Care Directive Form is the simplest way to create an advance directive. It’s available by utilizing the website of the California Attorney General. Several other methods to develop an advanced directive are also available. Some of them may make it easier to complete if you speak a different language. Other forms have questions related to your feelings about having specific procedures done. Ensuring you get exactly what you need when creating an advance directive can be best done by getting assistance from an experienced and knowledgeable legal professional.
Whichever option you choose, you need to designate one person to make health care decisions for you when you can’t. Naming them as your agent gives them medical power of attorney. You’ll also want to specify if they can make these decisions immediately or when a physician believes you cannot independently.
Naming an agent does have its limitations. You’re unable to designate an individual who is an employee or operator of a healthcare facility where you receive care unless they are a coworker or relative of yours. It may be wise to choose an alternate agent in case your first choice is unavailable. You can also limit the power your agent possesses and provide specific instructions related to medical treatments that can be done. Other elements you can designate include who your primary physician is and if you want your tissues and organs donated.
Getting specific with your advance directive helps ensure your wishes are met when you can’t communicate anymore.