How Do I Give Instructions for End-Of-Life Care?

A health care directive, also known as a living will, is one way for you to tell your family and health care providers what types of care you do or do not want under certain circumstances.

A “Do Not Resuscitate Order” or DNR, is a medical order written by your doctor telling providers not to perform CPR if you stop breathing or your heart stops beating. This is a medical document, not a legal document an attorney can prepare for you.

By appointing someone to act on your behalf with a durable power of attorney, you name them as your agent to help carry out your wishes, if you can’t speak for yourself.

Hospice programs frequently have resources free of charge that help give you the words and techniques to start these conversations with your family and caregivers.