An advance directive is a legal document you complete to make sure you get the healthcare you want. In an advance directive, you can choose someone to make healthcare decisions for you, if you are ever unable to make them yourself. You also can give information about the medical treatments and other care you would and would not want if you became very sick.
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Every adult should have an advance directive. It is especially important for adults who are older or have serious illnesses. Completing an advance directive helps you know that your values and goals will be honored. It also gives your healthcare agent the peace of mind of knowing what you would want them to do if they need to make healthcare decisions for you. An advance directive only deals with healthcare decisions. You must complete a different document to give someone authority to handle your finances or property.
Once your document is signed by two witnesses or notarized, make copies for your agent, doctor and family. Be sure to keep the original document somewhere you can easily locate. Look over your document every five years or after a hospitalization and update it, if needed.
Ask your doctor or nurse about additional support available through Case Manager consultation.
Note: You can also bring the filled out form directly to your provider.
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