I was in my doctor’s office last week. She asked me for my Advanced Health Care Directive. When I got home, I noticed my daughter’s contact information on the form is outdated.
What should I do?
– Sleepless on Stewart
Dear Sleepless on Stewart:
I cannot emphasize enough the importance of giving your doctor a copy of an updated Advanced Directive with current contact information. This could make a huge difference to you and your family!
Imagine you are in an accident and the ambulance takes you to a hospital across town. If hospital staff finds your health care card in your wallet, they can track down your doctor. If your doctor has a copy of the directive on file with your daughter’s current phone number, then she can be immediately contacted. Without access to your daughter’s number, hospital staff might need to make critical health care decisions without the input of your Agent (the most likely person to know your true wishes).
Also, don’t forget to give a copy to your daughter so that she can prove that she has the legal authority to make these important decisions on your behalf.