The Curious Autodidact

October 14, 2015

What is an Advance Directive?

Filed under: end of life,helpful hints — Honilima @ 7:12 am

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Advance directive is a general term for oral or written instructions about future medical care if a person becomes incapable of stating his or her wishes. In these documents, both wanted and unwanted treatment may be specified. In Washington State, there are three types of advance directives: the Health Care Directive (also known as a Living Will or Directive to Physician), the Durable Power of Attorney for Health Care, and the Physician Orders for Life-Sustaining Treatment.

Advance directives are only part of the process. Protecting your health care choices is a three-step process:

  1. deciding what you want;
  2. communicating your intentions so that others understand them;
  3. and committing your providers, family, and health care agent(s) to the acceptance (and sometimes defense) of your choices.
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