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Hospice is a unique concept of care designed to provide comfort and support to patients of all ages and their families when a life-limiting illness no longer responds to cure-oriented treatments. Hospice care neither prolongs life nor hastens death.

Capital Health Hospice staff and volunteers offer a specialized knowledge of medical care, including pain and symptom management. The goal of hospice is to improve the quality of a patient’s last days by offering comfort and dignity.

DPOA

A Durable Power of Attorney (DPOA) is a signed, dated, and witnessed document naming another person as your “healthcare agent” or “proxy” to make medical decisions for you in the event you are unable to make them yourself. Of course, it’s vital to make this decision before an accident, emergency, or Illness. These decisions are to include your code status, such as a Do-Not-Resuscitate (DNR) or your spiritual preferences.

Living Will

This form details what the individual wants in terms of medical treatment, including CPR (DNR), feeding tubes, and other medical interventions if the individual is unable to speak for themselves. The living will works in conjunction with the DPOA allowing decisions to be made by the chosen healthcare proxy following the patient’s living will as documented. This form is a legal document and can be witnessed by two unrelated persons or be notarized.

How Do I Choose a Healthcare Agent?

It’s always wise to think about choosing a person you trust to make these decisions and who can effectively communicate your wishes regarding treatment goals, procedures, and all healthcare-related matters if you cannot make these decisions yourself.

Should you decide to appoint a spouse or close family member to act as your healthcare agent, as many people do, keep in mind that they may be required to make difficult decisions regarding your care, such as the initiation or termination of specific care measures.