What is a Living WILL Why is it important?
A Living WILL should not be confused with a Last Testament as a Last Testament only deals with your estate on your demise.
If you are incapacitated and unable to communicate due to a serious illness or the result of an accident, the preparation of a Living WILL can help others make decisions on your behalf. To prepare a Living WILL involves researching the possible decisions that might need to be made in the future and documenting those options ahead of time for others to ensure your wishes are met. A Living WILL also allow you to express your values and desires related to end of life care.
A living WILL is a legal document that states the medical treatments you would and would not want to be used to keep you alive, as well as your thoughts for other medical decisions, such as pain management or organ donation
At some time, decisions might need to be made about the use of emergency treatments to keep you alive. These medical applications and procedures could include but not be limited to the following, cardio resuscitation, ventilators, dialysis, nasogastric, intravenous and the supply of oxygen.
Long term care on a life support system can be very expensive, placing an enormous financial burden on the family. Many people who prepare a living WILL do so to spare their loved ones from medical expenses associated with terminal conditions.
End of life protocol can help to relieve suffering as much as possible and to improve the quality of life while respecting your last wishes. It is therefore advisable to research the options that might be appropriate for you in the future.
Your decisions on how to handle any possible situation will differ depending on your age and your medical condition. It is therefore imperative that you consider carefully, your medical options for any life-threatening condition or end of life care that might be forced upon you, without warning. You may want to discuss medical procedures and practices with your doctor before you prepare a living WILL.
If you wish to refuse life-sustaining treatment in circumstances where you might die as a result of your wishes, you need to state this clearly in your living WILL. Deciding to refuse a treatment is not the same as asking someone to end your life. Euthanasia is illegal in Thailand.
The two main elements to any living WILL are a Health directive and a Financial Power of Attorney. A Living WILL can be amended and updated anytime as your circumstances change. A Living WILL should not be confused with a Last Testament as a Last Testament only deals with your estate on your demise.
What could possibly go wrong if you are hospitalized, incapacitated and you have not prepared a Living WILL. To start with the doctor on duty would legally become your guardian angel. Imagine if you had a serious accident which could have life change consequences such as, you could be in a coma for an indefinite period and thereafter you could be permanently paralyzed and bed ridden. The doctor’s choice of medical treatment and care would be final. This scenario could easily be avoided by preparing. A living WILL, allowing you to make decisions for the future which medical practitioners and family must accept.
A Living WILL also known as a Healthcare Directive prepared by Legal Services Hua Hin also includes a Financial POA (Power of Attorney)