HomeLegal MattersWhy Your Aging Family Member Needs a Healthcare Power of Attorney NOW

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Why Your Aging Family Member Needs a Healthcare Power of Attorney NOW — 2 Comments

  1. Hi, Dr. Rochester. My father is in early stage dementia, but can still function well within his routines. Any divergence from them overwhelms him and we’ve had some quite alarming incidents regarding his forgetfulness and overwhelm. Whenever I suggest that he grant us power of attorney for his health care or complete a living will, he becomes belligerent and absolutely refuses. He’s definitely the “head in the sand” type concerning this subject. Since he still has his faculties, is there any known way around this?

    • Hi, Celeste. Thanks for your comment and I’m sorry you’re going through this. Unfortunately, you cannot force your father to complete a power or attorney or living will. This is complicated by the fact that he must be of sound mind to complete these documents, so waiting could be detrimental. Perhaps help him to understand that these are ways to PRESERVE his power and control, not to take them away. These documents empower others to carry out HIS wishes. He can be as specific as he likes regarding the care he wants to receive. Don’t give up! Keep having the conversation.

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