Elder Care Health Issues- Make Sure Your Documents Conform To The Local Hospital’s Requirements

One of the estate planning issues that I discuss with my clients is the need to make sure that all of the client’s power of attorney for medical care forms conform and will be accepted to the local hospital, where the person might require medical care.   This is to protect the client, as it is not unheard of for one hospital to reject a patient’s medical decisions and choices, if they are not in the format or style that the hospital wishes to acknowledge and accept.

For example, Catholic based medical facilities may have strong internal policies about the child’s right to life versus the mother’s right to life that may come up during a highly complicated childbirth.   Another example is the content of the form:  you may have a DNR (Do Not Resuscitate order, which tells the doctor that you do not want extreme life saving measures, such as intubation, life support, or shock paddles to restart your heart), but the hospital also wants to know whether or not you have a DNI ( Do Not Intubate) order in place, and if you do not have a DNI specifically authorized on your paperwork, the physician may decide to override what you or your family perceive as your intended wishes about your medical care.

It is just prudent to make sure that your medical directives conform with the local hospitals where a client may be residing for  long periods of time.