While not the most joyful of topics to think about for estate planning, you must decide what type of end-of-life care you want if you cannot voice your desires. No matter how young or old you are, you do not know when tragedy may befall you and leave you incapacitated. This makes it even more imperative to plan a thorough advanced directive.
To help understand what goes on your directive, the Mayo Clinic examines common items to consider including. See how to plan for yourself and your loved ones.
Power of attorney
You need someone to speak with your voice if you cannot; this person is your power of attorney. Your power of attorney cannot be your doctor, but she or he should be open and comfortable discussing your end-of-life medical decisions with you. This individual also needs to respect your decisions and act as your health care advocate.
“Do not intubate” and “do not resuscitate” orders
Do you want to intubation or resuscitation should you ever need it? Note your preference not only on your advanced directive but also on medical facility intake paperwork.
Medical professionals use several medical treatments to keep patients alive, such as medical ventilation, CPR, palliative care, tube feeding and antiviral medication. Your directive needs to note which methods and procedures you do and do not want used on you. Think about the quality of life you want to have, the type of independence you desire and the manner of treatment you want and the medical conditions under which you want treatment.
Do not leave difficult and frustrating medical situations up to your loved ones to make without your input. Create a detailed advanced directive to save time and heartache for yourself and your friends and family.