Who needs an advance healthcare directive?

A power of attorney for medical or medical care is a type of advance directive in which you name a person to make decisions for you when you are unable to do so. In some states, this directive may also be referred to as a permanent power of attorney for health care or power of attorney for health care. Most people think that this document is only for those who are very sick or very old. It is absolutely essential for anyone who is 18 years of age or older.

Planning ahead can help people with Alzheimer's and their families clarify their wishes and make well-informed decisions about health care and financial arrangements. Cedars-Sinai is offering a free class, on the second Tuesday of the month, to help you complete your advance health care directive form and guide your loved ones and caregivers to determine the treatment you want. You may want to make a card to carry in your wallet stating that you have an advance directive and where it is kept. In some states, advance care planning includes a document called medical orders for life-sustaining treatment (POLST).

Utah Advance Health Care Directive forms include both living will and medical power of attorney for your convenience. Some states have records that can store your advance directives so that healthcare providers, your proxy, and anyone else you have given permission to access quickly. Establishing an advance directive can give you peace of mind and relieves your family members from the burden of making health care decisions. After you have completed your advance directives, discuss your decisions with your health care proxy, loved ones, and doctor to explain what you have decided.

Also, when you're ready to fill out your advance directives, your health care team may be able to help. Videos are not a substitute for advance directives, but they may be helpful to your health care proxy and loved ones. In the state where Alex and Anna live, the attending physician or an advanced practice nurse may select a decision maker who has a lower priority if, in their judgment, that person is “better qualified. An advance directive is also a good idea if your doctor doesn't agree with your healthcare options.

On this website, you can get information and purchase the Five Wishes Advance Directive and Planning Guide, which is available in 26 languages and in Braille.

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