Advance Directives

Thursday, December 30, 2010

An advance directive tells your doctor what kind of care you would like to have if you become unable to make medical decisions. Dr. Edward Hill discuses advance directives in todays 60 Second Housecall

Dr. Hill:

When you are admitted to the hospital, the staff will ask you if you have an advanced directive.

Advance Directives include:

- A Living Will - a legal document that describes the kind of life-sustaining treatments you would want if you were seriously or terminally ill.

- Durable Power of Attorney for HealthCare a legal document that designates a specific person to make medical decisions for you if you become unable to do so, and

- A Resuscitation Order a specific order your physician writes on the chart at each hospitalization. This allows you to state up front whether you want specific treatments in the event your heart stops. These include defibrillation, or shocking the heart, intubation, or putting a tube in your throat to help you breathe, drug therapy to restart your heart, and being placed on an artificial breathing machine.

It is important to make these decisions ahead of time. This way, you can be assured your wishes are carried out.

For North Mississippi Medical Center, Im Dr. Edward Hill.