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Living Wills Are
An Important Part Of Life
by: Ivon T. Hughes
If you are a young couple busy with young children with
good lives and jobs, you are certainly not ready to think
of your lives ending. But you do need to think about it.
Case in point - Terry Schiavo. She was just 26 years old
when cardiac arrest put her in a persistent vegative
state. The court battle over whether she'd want to live
or die drove home the message that end of life issues
know no age boundaries.
You need to talk about the issues. The problem is that if
something should happen, emotions could take over and
lead to something you may not have wanted if it isn't in
Why A Living Will Is Important
That's exactly why a Living Will is something every adult
should have. The definitive cases on the issue - Karen
Ann Quinlan, Nancy Cruzan and Terry Schiavo all involved
women in their twenties.
If you are not able to talk to yourself, the Living Will
speaks for you.
Legally, it's called a natural death declaration. It
allows you to define what you consider a terminal
condition and what you consider to be life sustaining
measures, for example, CPR, antbiotics, and food and
Don't Hide The Living Will
Once you create your Living Will, don't put in a drawer.
Talk to family members, give copies to all your doctors ,
friends and lawyer and take it with you on hospital
visits. The more people who have a copy, the more
effective it will be and the more likely it will be
You need to have this declaration; you hope you never
need it, but it's good to know it's there. If something
should happen, it won't be a struggle between families.
A Living Will should also include a durable power of
attorney for health care. It designates a specific person
to make medical decisions for you if you can't make them
About The Author
Ivon T. Hughes of The Hughes Trustco Group is a licensed
Insurance Broker. Author of The Life Insurance Handbook.
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