An advance directive is a legal document that helps ensure that your health care wishes will be respected if you are severely injured or develop a serious illness that prevents you from actively participating in decisions about your medical care.
Your advance directive should be copied and shared with your doctor, attorney, caregiver, and family/friends. Keep your document in a location that is safe and easy to access.
Things to consider when completing your advance directives:
- It is your right to choose your medical care. Discuss your wishes with your doctor and family.
- Advance directives do not expire.
- To ensure your wishes are followed, provide copy of your advanced directive to your doctor, your family, and have it readily available.
- You should review your advance directives periodically. If you want to make changes, create a new document.
- Inform all necessary parties if you make any changes.
Resources to help you prepare an advance directive
Advance directives are accepted throughout the United States, however may not be recognized from one state to another. Here are links to external resources that can help you prepare an advance directive: