• Troyer & Good, PC

What are Advance Directives for Health Care?

Updated: Aug 24, 2019

Advance Directives for Health Care are actually three legal documents rolled into one: Health Care Power of Attorney, Living Will, and Appointment of a Health Care Representative. Together, they comprise one of the most important steps you can take in letting your family and doctor know what your wishes are for your own medical care.


Health Care Power of Attorney


You can choose a person to serve as your power of attorney for health care decisions during the times when you can’t make a decision for yourself. That person will be able to do any or all of the following:

  • Employ health care providers

  • Consent to or refuse health care for you

  • Admit or release you from a hospital or health care facility

  • Have access to your medical records

  • Make anatomical gifts

  • Request an autopsy

  • Make plans for the disposition of your body


Living Will


A Living Will clarifies your wishes for life‑prolonging procedures to be withheld or withdrawn so that you can be permitted to die naturally. Your attending physician must first certify in writing that: (1) you have an incurable injury, disease, or illness; (2) your death will occur within a short time; and (3) the use of life‑prolonging procedures would serve only to artificially prolong the dying process.


All medical procedures and medications which are necessary to provide you with comfort, care, and the alleviation of pain will be continued. In addition, you can make your wishes known regarding artificially supplied food and water. If, on the other hand, you wish to have medical procedures continued under such circumstances, you can sign a Life‑Prolonging Declaration rather than a Living Will.


Appointment of Health Care Representative


Your Health Care Representative will be the person who ensures your Living Will is enforced when you are unable to do so. This person will consult with your doctor as well as other family members, if appropriate.


Advance Directives for Health Care are an essential part of your estate plan. Our experienced attorneys can help you be prepared by having this document in place before an accident or tragedy strikes. Simply call our office or go online to schedule an appointment.

Fort Wayne, Indiana attorneys offering services in estate planning, Wills, Trusts, estate and trust administration, probate, elder law, Medicaid, asset protection, and guardianship.

​© 2020 by Madyson Shannon