Creating Your Living Will

Okay, okay… no one likes to talk about it, but it’s simply unavoidable. None of us will live forever. Even with all that science is doing to extend our life spans, nothing has cured natural death by old age yet. So in the meantime, you can’t afford to ignore the responsibilities that come with getting older. And one of the most important, and most often postponed, is a living will. In our youth, we argue that we have nothing to leave anyone, so why create a will? As we get older, the process becomes so overwhelming that people avoid it altogether. Both behaviors are a bad idea. Even if you’re in your early 30s, a will is a smart idea. For you, it’ll just be a living will that delivers the most benefit. Also known as an advance health care directive, a living will specifies what actions you wish for regarding your health in the event you are unable to make medical or health care decisions for yourself. It may be an unexpected accident, a chronic illness or a debilitating disease, but a living will is your enduring, and legally binding voice in the matter.

Due to the fact that roughly 25%+ of  US Deaths in seniors occur in health care buildings there has been many living wills have been set up to give directives for prolonging life with the use of machines and in cases where transplants and surgeries may be needed. Often prolonging life at late stages come at great personal or family expense and with much emotional pain and suffering for the individual and their loved ones. Even with insurance, a quarter of all Americans that find themselves in need of critical or continuing medical care lose their primary source of income and all (or most) of their savings. As well, a growing number of Americans (70% to 95%) would rather not accept medical treatment in certain situations than engage in aggressive medical therapy without the expectation of a positive outcome. The living will solves this problem by making the patient’s wishes known – and in some cases naming a health care proxy or a designee for medical power of attorney to a trusted friend or family member.

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