Burlington elder law attorneys help you to plan ahead in case something bad happens to you. You probably do not want to think about what would happen if you got into a serious accident or had a major medical emergency like a stroke and had to be rushed to the hospital. Unfortunately, if you do experience a medical emergency, there is a good chance you won’t be able to speak and express your preferences for medical care once you’re in the throws of the throes of the crisis and have been taken to the hospital.
If you are in this type of emergency situation, someone is going to have to make your medical decisions on your behalf when you cannot give or refuse consent to care. You want to make certain that the right decisions are made during this difficult time. This is especially important if there are circumstances where you would not want to receive specific types of medical care. Unsworth LaPlante, PLLC can help you to understand what types of steps you should take to make certain that you protect yourself in case of a serious medical emergency and our legal team can assist you in putting together a plan to avoid unwanted care if you get badly hurt or sick. Give us a call today to find out more.
Why is it Important to Take Action to Avoid Unwanted Medical Care?
It is vital to express your preferences in advance about the kinds of care you want in an emergency. There are a few big reasons why you want to make your wishes known.
First, and most obviously, you know the circumstances under which you want to be kept alive. If you would remain living but be in a persistent vegetative state or if you could remain alive but unable to breathe on your own, you may decide that this is not the type of life you want to live. It is your right to determine how you value quality versus quantity of life, and you should express your preferences in advance of the time when this decision must be made so your wishes will be respected.
You can also spare your family a difficult choice by expressing your wishes in advance. If you don’t want to force your spouse or other close family members to make the choice to cut off life saving care – or to pull the plug as it is colloquially referred – you should take control of the decision and make it yourself while you can. This can spare your family worry and guilt over what is the right choice for your care.
What Steps Should You Take to Avoid Unwanted Medical Care?
To make sure you avoid unwanted medical care in case of an emergency, you should create advanced directives for healthcare. You can use tools like a DNR, or Do Not Resuscitate, to specify that you don’t want to be brought back using techniques like CPR.
You can also specify that you do not want extraordinary measures used to save your life or machines to be used to keep you alive if you have no quality of life left. It is common, for example, to stipulate in your advanced directives that you do not want a ventilator to breathe for you or a feeding tube to be used to administer nutrition if you cannot consume food on your own.
In addition to providing specific instructions for care you will, and won’t, receive under particular circumstances, you can also designate a healthcare proxy and give that individual authority to make your decisions for you on any kinds of medical care you haven’t addressed in advance and cannot consent to. Naming an appropriate healthcare proxy allows you to choose a person who you know will respect your wishes and who you are confident understands your position on the kinds of care you do- and don’t – want to get.
Getting Help from Burlington Elder Law Attorneys
Burlington elder law attorneys at Unsworth LaPlante, PLLC can assist you with creating advanced directives for healthcare that will be legally enforceable and that will provide you with the protections you expect so you can avoid unwanted medical interventions.
To find out more about the ways in which our legal team can assist you in expressing your preferences for emergency medical care, join us for a free seminar. You can also give us a call at (802) 879-7133 or contact us online to get personalized advice and help with your incapacity planning provided by a compassionate and experienced attorney at our firm. Call today to get your plan in place.