A practical guide to documenting your decisions and preferences in case of incapacitating illness.
It won’t happen to me.
I’m too busy to worry about a living will.
My family will know what to do.
No one wants to plan for incapacitating illness or death. But to spare loved ones from needless emotional suffering, or even legal battles, people of all ages need to document and communicate clear decisions about the final details of their lives while they are healthy and have time to fully consider their own values and preferences.
Here, Drs. David Doukas and William Reichel help individuals make decisions and communicate their wishes to health care providers and family members and other loved ones. They use a question-and-answer format to guide readers through the process—emphasizing the crucial connection between values and treatment preferences. They explain advance directives and the health care decision-making process, including the values history, family covenants, proxies, and proxy negation. The appendix includes resources and web links for learning about advance directive requirements and obtaining legal forms in all fifty states.
This practical guide helps people navigate the intimidating but important process of thinking about, and planning for, an uncertain future.