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What Is a Health Care Proxy? October 12, 2016

Chelsea, Manhattan
What Is a Health Care Proxy?, Manhattan, New York

In the event you become ill, incapacitated, or in any way unable to make health care decisions for yourself, a health care proxy is a document that can ensure your needs are met and your wishes are honored. Also called a medical power of attorney, a health care proxy lets you designate a person to make decisions on your behalf should you become unable to do so; this person is called an agent or a proxy.

Ideally, this is someone with whom you have discussed your wishes and goals as far as your medical care is concerned. If it becomes impossible for you to communicate those requirements because of an illness or injury, your proxy steps in and speaks for you. If your condition is temporary, and you recover the ability to speak and care for yourself, your rights to make your own healthcare decisions revert back to you.

Who To Appoint & What To Discuss

health care proxyYour proxy is the person who could be called upon to make life-and-death decisions on your behalf. Because of this, it is crucial that you appoint someone you trust, who understands and respects your wishes and moral views, and who would not be afraid to make some tough decisions. Who you ultimately choose is entirely up to you, but people often appoint loved ones, close friends, or attorneys.

There are many things you'll want to discuss with the person you're appointing before you sign your health care proxy. These include your thoughts and feelings on doctors and hospitals, as well as your opinions on palliative care and life-prolonging treatments like life support, ventilators, and feeding tubes. Also, you'll want to talk frankly about your religious and spiritual beliefs and if they figure into any of your healthcare decisions, now or in the future.

When it comes time to prepare your health care proxy, trust the professionals at We The People of NY. For more than 25 years, they have been helping people throughout New York City with legal document preparation. Call (212) 633-2200 to learn more about their health care proxy services. You can also visit them on Facebook and Twitter to stay up to date on recent news and information. Contact them today to start protecting your healthcare preferences.

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