Health Care Documents Attorney in Cary, North Carolina
What Health Care Documents Do I Need to Have?
Every person 18 years or older needs to have a Health Care Power of Attorney. Since no one knows when or if we'll get sick and can't communicate due to an illness, injury, accident, etc, everyone should have a Health Care Power of Attorney so they know the people they select and trust will have the legal authority to make sure they get and receive proper treatment and care.
You should also have HIPAA Authorization made to endure for your lifetime. HIPAA is our federal privacy law. You probably know about it because you sign it each time you go to the doctor. It gives access to your health information to those you choose. An up-to-date Health Care Power of Attorney gives access to this information according to State law. However, since HIPAA is a federal law that along may not work. Additionally, HIPAA releases typically expire a year or less after dating and signing it. So, if your doctor's form lapses your family may not get information from the doctor's office or the hospital billing department. A properly drafted and executed HIPAA can fix this. Your doctor's office won't do it properly, but I will. Contact me today for more information.
A Living Will (An Advance Directive for a Natural Death) is an essential document. CLICK HERE for more information. However, some people are not ready to make these decisions. In these cases, a properly drafted and executed Health Care Power of Attorney can give authority to your family to make these end-of-life decisions on your behalf. But if it doesn't, your doctors will make the decision. I've heard of too many times a family felt the doctor was either too quick or too slow to "pull the plug". Don't put your family in that situation. Either give them the authority to make the decision or make the decision yourself so they are burdened with it.
Cremation is becoming more popular because it is cheaper than a burial. North Carolina law gives you the opportunity to not only authorize but also direct your survivors to cremate your remains. We use a simple form to comply with the law wherein you choose what you want and what your survivors are allowed to do. If you want to be cremated, it is best to authorize it in a properly drafted and executed Authorization for Cremation form.
Do Not Resuscitate (DNR) & Medical Orders for Scope of Treatment (MOST) Forms are also documents some people use when planning end-of-life scenarios. Both these forms must be done with your physician, not your attorney because it is a medical order that requires authorization from a physician. Some people need one or the other while other people need both. For more information about these forms contact your physician.