Why is the issue of advance medical directives so important?
There are news stories all the time highlighting the problems that arise when someone doesn’t have an advance medical directive (AMD) with the most famous case being that of Terri Schiavo – the woman whose husband and parents fought over whether or not to keep her on a feeding tube after full cardiac arrest left her in a persistent vegetative state.
Advance medical directives are written statements in which you provide instructions that describe the kind of medical treatments you would want or not want under particular conditions, and/or in which you choose someone to make medical treatment decisions for you if you become unable to make or communicate those decisions for yourself.
Had Terri completed an AMD the decision wouldn’t have resulted in family members fighting one another in federal courts, but when loved ones are left behind without written guidance the odds for conflict and emotional distress are heightened.
Where can I create an advance medical directive?
While there are lots of paper versions, My Directives offers the first universal advance digital directive (uADD)™ – and best of all it’s free!
MyDirectives is a web-based system that combines all of the elements of a living will, a medical power of attorney, a do-not-attempt-resuscitation form, and organ donation and autopsy preferences. Your uADD is then stored in a secure database that is available to you and your medical treatment providers (usually hospital admissions staff, emergency room nurses, and doctors) 24 hours a day, seven days a week, anywhere in the world. That way you don’t have to find paper documents before going to the hospital or create and re-create the documents every time you enter a facility.