A Living Will:
- Comes into play only if you are in a “persistent vegetative state” or the “final stage of a terminal illness” and are being kept alive by a “mechanical device.”
- A Living Will tells the world whether you want to be kept alive in those specific circumstances. The choice is yours.
- A Living Will also authorizes others to communicate your wishes if you are not able to do so.
- A Living Will can be prepared by an attorney, or any other knowledgeable third party.
A Do Not Resuscitate Order:
- Can come into play even if you are not in a “persistent vegetative state,” the “final stage of a terminal illness,” or being kept alive by a “mechanical device.”
- A Do Not Resuscitate Order (commonly called “DNR”) means you don’t want the application of efforts to resuscitate you using methods such as CPR, chest compression, defibrillation, mouth to mouth or mouth to mask, ventilator or any similar medical procedure.
- A DNR order can only be authorized by a physician. You, or someone authorized to act on your behalf, of course, must approve the DNR order, in writing.
- You are in reasonably good health and have a heart attack at home. You have a Living Will. Some type of resuscitation is required to keep you alive; it will be administered.
- You are in extremely poor health, have lost lots of your mental acuity, and have been in and out of hospitals for many serious medical conditions over the past few years. You have a heart attack at home. You have a Living Will. Some type of resuscitation is required to keep you alive; it will be administered.
- Same facts as example 2 except you also have a DNR order. You will not be resuscitated.
If you are interested in learning more about these types of advance medical directives, please visit our website and read our blog for recent posts. For advice specific to you or your family, please contact the office. We would be glad to meet with you for a no hassle, no charge initial consultation, no matter how long it lasts.