My wife and I are considering filling out this paperwork. Does any one else have this in place? Also, are doctors required by law to follow them?
Things have changed a bit since then. The current form is produced by the State of Georgia for the citizens to ensure it is acceptable in all Ga Courts.Thank you for your response, however, my mother died over ten years ago and had a Living Will and a DNR in her chart. One of her physicians completely ignored both of these directives and placed her on a ventilator. We were under the impression that these documents were legal and would be followed by her physicians.
Thanks for the link.Things have changed a bit since then. The current form is produced by the State of Georgia for the citizens to ensure it is acceptable in all Ga Courts.
Thanks for your response. Before my mothers procedure, her anesthesiologist stopped by her room to talk to us. She asked us several questions and then mentioned that my mother had a DNR and a Living Will. She point blank asked us what we wanted done if she went into respiratory arrest or cardiac arrest. We told her to follow her DNR and her Living will. She said okay and left the room.I would think (and I've done no legal research on this point) that once you notify a doctor that the patient has an advance directive for healthcare (living will, medical proxy, etc.) and it says "pull the plug" or "let my son decide when to pull the plug" and the doctor ignores this, that can open up the doctor for a lawsuit for any pain and suffering the patient experienced.
And, perhaps, for any extra cost of keeping the patient alive another week, another month, or whatever.
It could be a civil suit in malpractice (negligence-based tort) or battery (doing things physically to the patient that the patient DID NOT CONSENT TO).
The biggest problem I'm aware of with such medical directives is that often neither the patient nor the guardians / agents / decision-makers bring up this topic with the doctor or hospital staff. Doctors can't follow instructions that they don't know about !
Thanks for your response. We were very aware of the differences between a DNR and a Living Will. Her DNR was placed in her chart two days before this procedure.A living will and a DNR order are two completely different things. A living will is for a long period. A DNR has to be renewed periodically and has to bear a current signature from a doctor.
DNR forms should be an original bearing a current, original signature with explicit instructions and include the conditions under which they apply.
It's possible that if the original DNR can not be located that a patient will be resuscitated. We can always pull the plug later. We can't bring you back once we've decided not to resuscitate so the default will always be to save life.