Our Health Library information does not replace the advice of a doctor. Please be advised that this information is made available to assist our patients to learn more about their health. Our providers may not see and/or treat all topics found herein.

Advance directive

An advance directive is a legal form you fill out. It says what kinds of medical care you want if you aren't able to make decisions for yourself. It tells your family and your doctor what to do if you're badly hurt or have a serious illness that keeps you from saying what you want.

There are two main types of advance directives:

  • Living will. This is also called a declaration.
  • Medical power of attorney. This is also called a durable power of attorney for health care.

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