Health Care Powers of Attorney

A health care power of attorney gives another person the authority to make medical decisions for you. A person can choose to make the health care power of attorney effective when signed, or only when he or she is unable to make his or her own health care decisions.

A Mental Health Power of Attorney gives another the additional ability to commit you to a level 1 mental health facility, if necessary, if you later are diagnosed with a disease such as dementia or Alzheimer’s."

Living Wills and DNRs

A living will is a document by which you specify your wishes on end-of-life matters. For example, if you have a terminal illness and whatever measures taken will only prolong the dying process, would you want food and hydration? Would you want pain medications? Would you want to be kept on a respirator? Chemotherapy? Kidney dialysis? All this can be specified in your living will.

A “Do Not Resuscitate” Form, or a DNR, allows a person to indicate that he or she does not want to be resuscitated if he or she suffers cardiac or respiratory arrest. In Arizona the form must be on bright orange paper and can be obtained for free from the Arizona Department of Health Services.