We can't always predict what will happen in life, but we can be prepared. Advance Directives are legal forms which give a person the power to decide their medical care for situations where they are unable to communicate their wishes. Advance Directive forms vary by state; however, they generally include healthcare instructions and an appointed decision maker who can make healthcare decisions on your behalf. These forms can lift some of the burden off of loved ones, guide medical professionals and ensure that your wishes are followed.
Advance Directives are written, legal forms which let you provide health care instructions and appoint a decision maker to carry out your medical wishes should you not be able to speak for yourself. Every state has its own Advance Directive model documents which should be followed to ensure your forms are legal. It's up to you how specific you wish them to be.
One very important type of Advance Directive is when an individual designates that they want to donate their organs or tissues, whether upon their death, or during life, for example by giving up bone marrow or one kidney to someone in need of a transplant. This program explores the importance of organ/tissue donation through the experiences of a transplant recipient and a donor family.
Advance directives, which describes the kind of medical care an individual would want if they were too ill or hurt to express their wishes, is an important consideration for anyone over the age of 18. This program describes how anyone can create an advance directive, either by accessing community resources or by talking with an attorney.