It’s very important to make your wishes known about the kind of care you would, or wouldn’t, want if you were unable to speak for yourself.
Put it on paper
Unfortunately, it’s not enough just to tell someone your preferences. You must create a living will, in writing, witnessed and notarized, for your wishes to become official and legally binding. Without a written living will, including a person named to stand in for a patient, health care organizations must make every possible effort to keep that patient alive, including emergency resuscitation, and connection to feeding tubes, oxygen and trachea tubes, to name a few.
Not just for the elderly
Anytime you need hospital care or face surgery or treatment, your preferences may come into play. Be sure you’re ready. The best way to care for yourself and your family – in times of medical crisis, emergency, stress or confusion – is to spell it out clearly:
How GRHS can help, no matter where you get care
We hope to make this process as easy as possible for our patients, as well as for the patients of other organizations. We’ve created a brochure and worksheets, including instructions, for any website visitor to download, complete, execute and distribute to family and caregivers.
We encourage you to complete these documents now, including all required signatures, and provide copies to your providers and family. Keep a copy for yourself, and put one in a secure place – a safe, safe deposit box, or even in your freezer, where it’s likely to be protected in the event of a fire. We also recommend that, before any surgery, you review your living will to be sure you’re still comfortable with your choices. Then bring a copy with you when you check into the hospital.
Why not start today?
Take care of yourself, and honor your loved ones by creating your living will before you need it.