Apr 10, 2019 10:00 AM

A father and son walk and talk together

An advance directive is a way to tell your loved ones and doctors your wishes if something happens and you can’t speak for yourself.

A directive can include the type and extent of your medical care. It can help your family and care team better understand your values. Being prepared can bring you and your loved ones peace of mind. This book will tell you more about advance care planning.

What is an advance directive?

Advance directive forms are a way to write down your wishes before a crisis. These legal documents tell your loved ones and doctors what medical treatments you want and don’t want in case you can’t speak for yourself.

Who should have one?

Everyone. Each person may face an unexpected medical crisis. Illness or injury can make anyone unable to make decisions or speak for themselves. That makes it much harder for family and loved ones to know what to do.

Only 37% of people in the United States have an advance directive.

When should I fill out my advance directive?

Now. It is best to do it while you are able to think clearly and before a crisis ever happens. It is a good idea to review and update your directive every year.

advance directive patient and family support

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