Additional Information Concerning
Power of Attorney for Health Care
and Living Wills |
The following warnings and definitions apply to Declarations (Living Wills) and Power of Attorneys for Health Care:
a. Health care shall mean any treatment, procedure, or intervention to diagnose, cure, care for, or treat the effects of disease, injury, and degenerative conditions.
b. Health care decision shall include consent, refusal of consent, or withdrawal of consent to health care. Health care decision shall not include the withdrawal or withholding of routine care necessary to maintain patient comfort, the withdrawal or withholding of the usual and typical provision of nutrition and hydration, or the withdrawal or withholding of life sustaining procedures or of artificially administered nutrition or hydration.
c. Life-sustaining procedure shall mean any medical procedure, treatment, or intervention that uses mechanical or other artificial means to sustain, restore, or supplant a spontaneous vital function and when applied to a person suffering from a terminal condition or who is in a persistent vegetative state, serves only to prolong the dying process. Life-sustaining procedure shall not include routine care necessary to maintain patient comfort or the usual and typical provision of nutrition and hydration.
d. Persistent vegetative state shall mean a medical condition that, to a reasonable degree of medical certainty as determined in accordance with currently accepted medical standards, is characterized by a total and irreversible loss of consciousness and capacity for cognitive interaction with the environment and no reasonable hope of improvement.
e. Terminal condition shall mean an incurable and irreversible medical condition caused be injury, disease, or physical illness which, to a reasonable degree of medical certainty, will result in death regardless of the continued application of medical treatment including life-sustaining procedures.
f. Usual and typical provision of nutrition and hydration shall mean delivery of food and fluids orally, including by cup, eating utensil, bottle, or drinking straw.
a. A Power of Attorney for Health Care gives the person you designate as your attorney in fact the power to make health care decisions for you when you are determined to be incapable. Although not necessary and neither encouraged or discouraged, you may wish to state instructions or wishes and limit the authority of your attorney in fact.
b. Subject to stated limitations the person you designate as your attorney in fact has a duty to act consistently with your desires as stated or otherwise made known by you or, if your desires are unknown, to act in a manner consistent with your best interests. The person you designate does, have the right to withdraw from this duty at any time;
c. You may specify that any determination that you are incapable of making must be confirmed by a second physician;
d. The person you designate as your attorney in fact will not have the authority to consent to the withholding or withdrawal of life-sustaining procedures or artificially administered nutrition or hydration unless you give him or her that authority in the power of attorney for health care or in some other clear and convincing manner;
e. The power of attorney for health care should be reviewed periodically. It will continue in effect indefinitely unless you exercise your right to revoke it. You have the right to revoke the power of attorney at any time while you are competent by notifying the attorney in fact or your health care provider of the revocation orally or in writing;
f. Despite any provisions in the power of attorney for health care, you have the right to make health care decisions for yourself as long as you are not incapable of making those decisions; and
g. Despite any provisions in the power of attorney for health care you should seek legal advice. The power of attorney for health care will not be valid for making health care decisions unless you acknowledge before a Notary Public that signing was your free and voluntary act or it is signed by two qualified witnesses who are personally known to you and who are present when you sign or acknowledge you signature.
Please remember that a Living Will and a Power of Attorney for Health Care are your documents, you can customize and modify them to suit your needs.
Please call me to arrange an appointment to discuss your wishes.