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Frequently Asked Questions

What should I do with my Advance Directives after I sign them?

After your Advance Directives (healthcare instructions and/or appointment of a healthcare agent and/or organ and tissue donation) are signed and witnessed, give one copy each to: your healthcare agent, alternate healthcare agent, your physician, and hospital or nursing home. You may also want to give a copy to your lawyer. Please bring a current copy with you for any hospital admission to be added to your medical record.

Keep the originals in a safe location where they can be easily found. Your safety deposit box may not be the best place for your Advance Directives, unless you are certain someone close to you has access to the safe deposit box if you become unavailable. This includes your spouse because if you both are unconscious (e.g., by being involved in a traffic accident together) a spouse would not be able to access your safe deposit box for this important information. Make sure your healthcare agent knows where the original is so it can be shown to your doctor upon request. However, photocopies of your documents are legally valid.



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