Through advance care planning, a person can make decisions about the care and treatments they would want to receive if they become unable to express decisions for themselves. Sometimes, when doctors believe a cure is no longer possible, decisions must be made about the use of emergency treatments to keep a person alive. These treatments can include CPR, ventilator utilization, artificial nutrition, hydration and comfort care. It can take a huge burden off loved ones who could otherwise be left with making important decisions without a person’s consent. In addition, studies show people who engage in advance care planning are less likely to pass away in the hospital and experience last resort and unnecessary surgeries.
Advance care planning includes completing an advance directive, which is a legal document that goes into effect only if a person is incapacitated. Two elements of an advance directive include a living will and a durable power of attorney for health care. Other documents could include organ and tissue donation forms.
Advance care planning is a service offered through Masonic Village Hospice, and staff are well prepared to help any individual and their family accomplish their health care goals.
Download the Pennsylvania Advance Care Directive PDF (English)
Download the Pennsylvania Advance Care Directive PDF (Spanish)