There are many aspects of estate planning that you have to think carefully about. One of these is naming someone as your medical power of attorney. This person will make health care decisions for you when you’re unable to make them yourself.
It’s imperative that you name someone who’s going to make the best decisions for you as your health care power of attorney. Be sure to consider these questions as you’re trying to determine who should take on this duty:
Their proximity to you in an emergency
Your power of attorney needs to be able to get to the hospital or facility where you are to make decisions about your care. Having someone who can get there quickly is important.
Their ability to think under pressure
Making medical decisions is often an emotional matter, especially when they are life-altering decisions. You need a power of attorney who can make those decisions despite the heightened emotions and stressful situations.
Their capacity to communicate and be assertive
Your power of attorney must be able to speak up to ensure your wishes are followed. Being assertive and communicating clearly are critical skills. They should put your wishes ahead of those of your family members, and be willing to handle tough situations.
Remember, you can also include some of your medical decisions in the advanced directives. This is a written document that tells your care team about your specific wishes. For example, you can include things like whether you want intravenous nutrition and hydration and how you want to handle pain relief. Having everything together for your estate plan is critical so you can have the peace of mind you deserve because you’ll know that your loved ones have your plan to guide them.