July 23, 2024
Advance Planning for Important Health Care Decisions
Advance Planning for Important Health Care Decisions

Many people operate under the mistaken impression that it suffices to tell friends and relatives how they wish their care to be managed if they are in a life-threatening situation. However, unless a patient’s wishes have been put in writing, family and/or friends present at the time will be required to help make critical health care decisions with the medical team. This can result in family conflict, or the decisions made may be based on the family members’ religious or cultural beliefs, or grief, rather than on the patient’s wishes.

Planning health care decisions in advance helps an individual make an informed, thoughtful decision when they are not under any pressure. A Health Care Directive, also known as a durable power of attorney for health care or advance directive, is a legal document in which an individual specifies what their health care choices would be if they were unable to speak for themselves. The directive also includes the name of a Health Care Directive Agent—the person authorized to make decisions on the individual’s behalf.

Southeast Georgia Health System will host an informative Health Care Directive Fair on Tuesday, April 16 and April 30, 7 a.m.-7 p.m., on its Brunswick Campus in the Kemble Conference Center, 3011 Kemble Avenue. A similar event will take place on the Camden Campus on Thursday, April 8 and April 18, 7 a.m.-7 p.m., in the Conference Center located at 2000 Dan Proctor Drive, St. Marys.

Health Care Directives will be available at the events and medical staff representatives will be present to answer questions. Individuals can complete directives at the event or return the directive to Medical Records at a later date to have it scanned into their permanent medical record.

Attendees are requested to bring a photo ID when presenting the completed Health Care Directive for scanning into their medical record. For questions or concerns, email [email protected].

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