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POLST – the newest healthcare document

I recently attended a luncheon with other estate planning attorneys and the guest speaker asked how many of us  had heard of the POLST document.  To my shock, I was one of only a few who raised my hand!  The POLST,Physician’s Order for Life-Sustaining Treatment, is the “newest” document in healthcare; it’s been around for a couple years.  It is an attempt by the Georgia Department of Public Health to regulate the advance directive for healthcare (a.k.a. living will) because there are so many different types of advance directives that attorneys use in their practices.  Using the POLST form attempts to make things more uniform for hospitals and doctors.

What is the POLST?  The POLST is a fairly simple form, unlike the advance directive, that outlines your healthcare decisions so your doctor knows what you would like done in the event you become incompetent or incapacitated.  You discuss your decisions with your doctor and you both sign the document.  A copy is kept in your medical records and you should keep a copy.

The POLST is something I have given to all of my clients and as I mentioned, I was so surprised that other estate planning attorneys had not even heard about it.  So if you want an attorney who keeps in touch and current with what is going on in the estate planning industry, call me and let’s set up an appointment.  I’ll be sure to give you a POLST!

Click here to read more about the POLST.

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