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Atchison Hospital is committed to providing information, education, and assistance with advance directives to the Atchison community. An advance directive is your written, legal instructions for your health care. We assist with three kinds of advance directives at Atchison Hospital:
- Durable Power of Attorney for Healthcare Decisions-This document allows you to designate who you would want to make healthcare decisions for you if something happens and you are unable to make decisions for yourself. Your doctor will always communicate with you about your treatment options as long as you are able to understand and decide. This document is signed, witnessed, and notarized.
- Healthcare Treatment Directive-This document states your wishes for medical care in the event of serious illness or the end of life. Many people do not want aggressive medical treatment if there is no reasonable hope that they can regain an acceptable quality of life. Again, your doctor will always communicate with you about your treatment options as long as you are able to understand and decide. This document is also signed, witnessed, and notarized.
- Do Not Resuscitate Directive-This document is a physician order which directs medical personnel not to do CPR or other treatments if your heart and breathing stop. It is signed by you and your doctor and is also witnessed. It should be posted in the home for reference by emergency medical personnel.
Everyone has the right to make advance directives and to have these documents honored by medical providers. Our social workers will be happy to answer your questions, help you complete your directives, notarize them, and have them placed in your medical record at Atchison Hospital. Please contact Ralph Dowell at 360-5596 or Aggie Asher at 360-5597 to set up an appointment to complete your documents. You do not have to be a patient at Atchison Hospital, and there is no charge for this service.
The following link to The Center for Practical Bioethics will allow you to access more information and the actual blank documents we use here at Atchison Hospital. http://www.practicalbioethics.org/resources/caring-conversations