The person you have appointed to make health care decisions for you is called your Attorney in Fact (AIF) or Agent. We urge you to have a frank and open discussion with your AIF, successor AIFs, and your family about your health care wishes. If, and when, the time comes for them to make decisions for you, it will make their job much easier, stress free, and knowing they are carrying out exactly what you would want.
- If you have chosen in your Durable Power of Attorney for Health Care to give your AIF the ability to withhold or withdraw artificial nutrition, we suggest your talk about the following:
- Are there any, and if so what, circumstances would you be okay with being kept alive by artificial nutrition and hydration? Is there a length of time, after which, you would no longer wish to have artificial nutrition and hydration?
- Would those answers change based on other help concerns? (e.g. if you had dementia or Alzheimer’s)
- What are your feelings about kidney dialysis? Would those answers change based on other help concerns? (e.g. if you had dementia or Alzheimer’s)
- Are there any circumstances that you would not want CPR administered?
- Do you want to be an organ donor? Is there anything you would NOT want to donate?
- Do you want your AIF or doctor to make the final decision about any medical treatments you might need?
- How importance is your independence and self-sufficiency in your life? How much of a role should that play in the decision your AIF makes?
- Is there anything else you feel strongly about, it is very important that you discuss that with your AIF.