Advance directives: Make your wishes known

Do your loved ones know what kind of medical care you would want if you were unable to express your wishes? If you are age 18 or older and mentally competent, you have the right to make decisions about your medical care. Advance directives are legal documents that record those decisions.

In general, advance directives describe the treatment you would want if you became seriously ill or injured and were unable to communicate with your healthcare team. There are several examples of advance directives, including

  • A living will, which describes how you feel about breathing machines or feeding tubes
  • Health care power of attorney, which allows you to name a person who can make medical decisions for you if you’re unable to do so
  • Advance instruction for mental health treatment

Patient with loved one and doctorIt’s important to talk with your loved ones and your doctor about your wishes. The conversations may be uncomfortable, but they will help ensure you receive the care you want.

On April 16 from 11 am-1 pm, Durham Regional’s Pastoral Care Services will host an information table to help the community learn more about these important forms and fill them out on the spot.

To learn more about advance directives and get started, visit

One thought on “Advance directives: Make your wishes known

  1. Pingback: Health highlights from around the Web | Durham Regional Hospital

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