Imagine – The unthinkable happens. You are involved in a car crash and are left without the ability to move or speak. Who would speak for you and make health care decisions for you?
The other day I came across a very informative and powerful video regarding end of life decision making and advance care planning. This video has a very important message: it is time to start communicating your healthcare decisions to your loved ones, and for your loved ones to communicate their wishes to you.
When creating your estate plan with your solicitor, it is important to not only draft a will which takes effect on death, but to also consider drafting a Power of Attorney. By being prepared and having your affairs in order you can relieve your family from having to make very difficult decisions and trying to speculate as to “what you would have wanted” once you have already become mentally incapable. It is important to have a plan in place before it is too late.
A Power of Attorney for Personal Care allows you to appoint someone to make your personal decisions for you including housing, healthcare, nutrition, shelter, hygiene and safety. Unlike the Power of Attorney for Property, this document only comes into play if you are unable to communicate or make decisions for yourself.
A living will, aka. an advanced directive, contains your instructions, often in a Power of Attorney, about what level of medical care you want in the event that you are unable to express your wishes to your loved ones. A living will can give directions to your family if they are faced with difficult end-of-life choices. By providing guidance to your family in the form of a living will, your loved ones will not have to worry about whether they “did the right thing” or “if this is truly what you would have wanted”.
If you are interested in reading more about advance care planning please visit http://www.advancecareplanning.ca/.
Thanks for reading.