Federal law requires hospitals to ask inpatients whether they have advance directives. Advance directives allow you to take control of choices regarding your medical future. They include a Living Will and Healthcare Power of Attorney.
A Living Will is a legal document you can complete that declares what your wishes are regarding the use of life-sustaining treatment if you should become unable to make decisions and are terminally ill or permanently unconscious.
A Healthcare Power of Attorney is a legal document that authorizes another person to make healthcare decisions for you if you are unable to make informed healthcare decisions for yourself.
It is a personal choice to have either of these documents. If you have these documents, you will be asked to provide us with a copy if you are spending the night in the hospital. If you would like further information about these forms, ask your nurse.
We do not advocate you complete advanced directives on the day of surgery, but we will be able to answer questions.