Most of us do not want to think that we will ever be in a situation where a Healthcare Power of Attorney would be used to determine what happens to us. A Healthcare Power of Attorney is a document where doctors are given advanced instructions about what life-sustaining treatments to give you when you are terminally ill with no chance of recovering. We do not think that we will ever be in that situation.
However, we know that it does happen to people. This is what the Terry Schiavo situation was about a few years ago. She did not have a Healthcare Power of Attorney and her family was arguing about what to do. Everyone should have learned from that they need a Healthcare Power of Attorney. They did not learn that. Recently, Hector “Macho” Camacho was pronounced brain dead after he was shot in Puerto Rico. Camacho did not have a Healthcare Power of Attorney. Given his profession, that is astounding. As with Terry Schiavo, Camacho’s family did not all agree over what doctors should do.
Even if you do not think that you will ever need a Healthcare Power of Attorney, you should get one just in case. Do not leave these important decisions to your family. Make them your own. Talk to an estate planning attorney about how to do that.
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