What is an Advance Care Directive?

Close to 70 percent of today’s seniors will require some from of long-term care assistance. But despite the odds, many people still do not make provisions for end-of-life decisions to be made in the event they are incapacitated. An accident or sudden illness may require decisions which are immediate and unexpected — decisions about pain management, hospice care, life-support treatment, feeding tubes and organ donation.  

The 1990 Patient Self-Determination Act requires facilities receiving Medicare and Medicaid to ask patients whether they have an Advance Care Directive and offer information about applicable state law concerning patients’ medical decision-making rights. An Advance Care Directive is not a will; it does not bequeath possessions or assets. It states your choices about health care, if you are unable to directly state those choices at the time.  

Two types of advance care directives are a living will, which states your medical care requests, and a durable power of attorney for health care (also called a medical power of attorney or health care proxy), which names a person to make medical decisions on your behalf if you are unable to do so.

The elder law attorneys and estate planning lawyers at the Hook Law Center in Virginia Beach and Suffolk, help Virginia families will trust & estate administration, guardianships, long term care planning, special needs planning, veterans benefits, and more. Learn more at http://www.hooklawcenter.com/