Just as your estate plan gives you power to control how your assets will be distributed after you are gone, so too can you use it to stay in charge of your medical care if you ever become incapacitated or incompetent. With people in Colorado Springs and El Paso County living longer lives than ever before, healthcare planning is an essential way to make sure you never have to go through treatments you object to for one reason or another.
Advance healthcare planning in Colorado Springs
There are several steps to take to establish your healthcare plan:
- First, fill out an advance medical care directive. This document lays out the extent of care you would want in various scenarios. For example, you can direct if you want doctors to use a ventilator or other life-support machine to extend your life if you are in a vegetative state. Your attorney will go over the necessary scenarios with you to ensure your directive is clear, comprehensive and reflects your personal wishes.
- Next, choose a healthcare proxy. This will be the person who represents you in making medical decisions if you are incapacitated, based on the information in your advance care directive. Needless to say, you should select somebody you can trust with this huge responsibility. It can be your spouse, one of your children, another relative or even a friend.
- Ask your choice if they are willing to be your healthcare proxy. Communicate what kind of care you would want if the time ever comes.
- Your attorney will help you complete your advance care directive with your appointed agent’s name and the proper signatures.
- Keep a copy of your directive and provide one to your proxy. Also, give one to your doctor to add it to your medical file, and discuss your preferences with them.
Having plans in place in case of serious illness or injury in the future can give you peace of mind today.