Letter to the Editor: Prepare for Health Care Decisions before They’re Needed
After your taxes are filed, please consider other important documents. April 16 is National Healthcare Decisions Day. It exists to inspire, educate and empower the public and providers about the importance of advance care planning. National Healthcare Decisions Day is an initiative to encourage people to express their wishes regarding health care, and for providers, facilities and loved ones to respect those wishes, whatever they may be.
A Power of Attorney for Health Care form designates an agent to make decisions if a person cannot make such decisions, perhaps as the result of an accident or illness. The Wisconsin Living Will/Declaration to Physicians form allows a person to state wishes for when that person might not be able to communicate them in the future.
It is best to consider and prepare these important documents before they may be needed and before a health crisis. Discussions ahead of time can decrease anxiety and eliminate potential conflicts among loved ones in an already stressful situation at a hospital.
Review of these documents with an attorney is strongly encouraged, and fortunately for Door County residents, a number of local attorneys are experienced in these matters.
To get more information, visit dhs.wisconsin.gov/forms/advdirectives/index.htm.
Jennifer Moeller, Door County Circuit Court Commissioner
Sturgeon Bay, Wisconsin