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What is a Medical Durable Power of Attorney

When you create a living will and outline your specific advance directives for your end of life measures, it is important you get a medical durable power of attorney. In this specific power of attorney document, you grant permission to your authorized healthcare agent to make medical decisions on your behalf should you become incapacitated or unable to communicate. A medical durable power of attorney is different from a general power of attorney in that it only authorizes healthcare decisions. A general power of attorney is applicable to legal and financial affairs.

This is an important step because, in some states, no one is automatically authorized to make healthcare decisions for another adult. This applies to spouses, adult children, and other family members – they are not authorized to make medical decisions. The only one who can make decisions is your healthcare agent.

Role of Your Healthcare Agent

As you create your Healthcare Directive Action Plan and living will with My Living Wishes, we will ask that you share your plan with your healthcare agent you designated in your Medical Durable Power of Attorney. This person will have access to your Healthcare Directive Action Plan from any connected device and will be responsible for ensuring your wishes are carried out and respected.

Again, they will only be able to make decisions when you are no longer able to do so. In some cases, this may only be temporary as you recover from an illness or injury. However, it could be a long-term situation if you are permanently incapacitated.

As such, your healthcare agent will be granted access to your medical records and will be able to consult with your healthcare providers to make all decisions necessary for your long-term care. Your agent is to abide your documented wishes, so it is important to discuss your wishes with them and even work with them as you make your plan and advance directives.

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