Geriatrics and Extended Care
Advance Care Planning - Choosing a Person to Make Decisions
Part of the Advance Care Planning process involves choosing a person to make decisions for you if you were not able to do so. This person is called your Health Care Agent. One way to get started is to watch the podcast, Choosing a Health Care Agent.
You may want to choose more than one person, in the case that the first person you choose is not able to fill the role.
Think about people you know who share your views and values about life. Think about the people who mean the most to you. You may choose your spouse, an adult child, another family member, a friend or a neighbor.
Trust is key. Who do you feel comfortable discussing your wishes with? And, who do you trust to talk with health care providers about what matters to you and what you would want if you were not able to tell them yourself? You will want to choose a Health Care Agent who will follow your wishes, even if they do not agree with them, who will ensure your wishes are known and who will advocate for you to get the care you want.
Once you have made a choice, be sure to talk with your Health Care Agent about your values, wishes and choices. You may want to ask them to watch the podcast I’ve Been Chosen as a Health Care Agent – Now What?
These short podcasts provide details about choosing a health care agent – a trusted person who would make care decisions for you if you are no longer able to do so – and how to fulfill the role of health care agent if you have been asked to do that for someone.