Types of Advanced Directives:
Designation of Health Care Surrogate
Many people today are concerned about the medical care that they would be given if they became seriously ill and unable to speak for themselves. In some cases, this will be a temporary state and after successful treatment of the illness, you will be able to make decisions again. In order to provide a way for your wishes to be carried out during this time, you can appoint a person to make these decisions for you. Under Florida law this person is called the Health Care Surrogate.
In some cases, your medical condition may be so serious that you are likely to die or remain in a coma or have to remain in a hospital or nursing home. Some people don’t want to spend months or years dependent on life-support machines, and they don’t want to cause unnecessary emotional or financial distress for their loved ones. Others desire to be treated as long as treatment has positive benefits. In order to make your wishes known in these situations, you may choose to sign a “Living Will.” In this way, you can make your wishes known now, so that they can be carried out if necessary in the future.
Advanced Directives are documents that help you make your healthcare decision before you become sick. You can choose a person to make your healthcare decision for you, or you may choose to put your own wishes in writing. At Jackson Health System, we use one form that covers both the designation of a health care surrogate and living will.