Resources for Patients and Families

Plan Ahead with an Advance Directive


What is an Advance Directive?             

Decisions about end-of-life care are very personal and based individual beliefs and preferences. An advance directive makes your wishes known to your doctor and family regarding your care in the event you are too sick or hurt to speak for yourself. An advance directive goes into effect ONLY if you are unable to communicate for yourself. An advance directive is not only peace of mind that your wishes will be carried out, it is also reassuring for family members as they will have a clear plan of your preferences.


Types of Advance Directives


One or both of these can be part of an advance directive. You do not have to have an attorney to set up an advance directive, but it is a good idea. Discuss possible scenarios where decisions may have to be made with your physician. Once you decide on the care you do or do not want, discuss with your family, explaining why you want the care you want. Family members do not always want to go along with an advance directive, but this usually occurs when family members do not know about a patient's wishes or if they are not sure what has been decided.


You Can Change Your Mind Anytime
As long as you can speak for yourself, you can change your mind any time about what you have written down. If you make changes, tear up your old papers and give copies of any new forms or changes to everyone who needs to know.





You Have a Choice. Choose Alacare Hospice.




Useful Links and Friends of Alacare

Alabama Diabetes Association

American Cancer Society

Alzheimer's of Central Alabama 

National Healthcare Decisions Day

UAB Palliative Care