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Advance Directives

The Patient Self-Determination Act of 1990 requires that all Medicare and Medi-Cal providers inform patients about their right to make decisions about their own health care. This includes their right to accept or refuse medical treatment and their right to prepare Advance Health Care Directives.

What they are
Advance health care directives are documents such as a Power of Attorney for Health Care or an Individual Health Care Instruction. These are legally recognized documents designed to communicate our wishes for medical care when we are unable to decide for ourselves or communicate decisions.

What they do
Advance health care directives provide protection for those who wish to accept and continue medical treatment, as well as for those who wish to refuse or withdraw treatment.

A Power of Attorney for Health Care means a written document designates an agent/surrogate to make healthcare decisions on behalf of the patient or resident.

Individual Health Care Instruction or Individual Instruction means a patient's written or oral direction concerning a healthcare decision for that patient. An individual instruction may be limited to take effect only if a specified condition arises. 

Who benefits from them?
Advance health care directives are useful documents for patients, family members and healthcare providers. They are the best way for each of us to exercise our moral right to make decisions about our own medical care and treatment and protect that right when we are not able to exercise it.

Do you have an Advance Health Care Directive?
If not, talk to your physician or call the hospital at 688-0821 and ask to speak with your nurse or patient representative.


Tulare Regional Medical Center * 869 Cherry Street (street map) * Tulare, CA 93274 * (559) 688-0821 *
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