A Directive to Physicians (Living Will) is a document created to help communicate your wishes regarding medical treatment upon illness or injury.
You are encouraged to discuss your values and wishes with your family or chosen spokesperson, as well as your physician. Your physician, other health care provider, or medical institution may provide you with various resources to assist you in completing your Directive to Physicians. Brief definitions are listed below and may aid you in your discussions and advance planning.
This advance directive includes two possible situations.
If, in the judgment of your physician, you are suffering with:
- a terminal condition from which you are expected to die within six months, even with available life-sustaining treatment provided in accordance with prevailing standards of medical care;
- an irreversible condition so that you cannot care for yourself or make decisions for yourself and are expected to die without life-sustaining treatment provided in accordance with prevailing standards of medical care
Then you can request that:
- all treatments other than those needed to keep you comfortable be discontinued or withheld and your physician be allowed to let you die as gently as possible;
- you be kept alive in this terminal condition using available life-sustaining treatment unless you are in Hospice Care
Click here to
download and print a PDF of the Directive to Physicians (Living Will) questionnaire worksheet.
This worksheet can be useful in preparation to fill out the online questionnaire.