Boston Area Durable Powers of Attorney

Eastern Massachusetts Health Care Proxy Lawyer

At some point, each of us can fall into poor health and need help, not just from our doctors and family members but also with overall financial and health care decisions. For business and financial decisions, this substitute authority is called a durable power of attorney. For medical and personal decisions, this substitute authority is called a health care proxy.

Creating a durable power of attorney (POA) means you are assigning a health care proxy to make major health care decisions for you, based on your wishes.

A POA document needs to cover the basics, such as the person you trust to make these decisions for you, and also must contain language detailing what specific health event might trigger the proxy: a coma, a traumatic injury, a stroke, a diagnosis of advanced Alzheimer's or dementia. If this happens, it is time for the family member you appoint to step up for you.

A Health Care Proxy and HIPAA

Under the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), federal law protects every patient's health care privacy and restricts a health care provider's disclosure of protected information. A health care proxy would have access to relevant information regarding your health care; however, he or she would not have access to your full medical history.

A copy of the health care proxy must also be kept on file at the skilled nursing facility in which you are residing. It should also include specific instructions regarding the use or nonuse of medical and life-saving procedures.

We help elderly who are facing an urgent health care issue today and those who have decided to plan for tomorrow. In the Boston, Massachusetts area, call lawyer John Gianino at the Center for Elder Law and Estate Planning, at 888-784-0864 or contact us online.