How to Obtain an Advance Medical Directive

All states have statutes allowing Advance Medical Directives. Copies of the document(s) approved in your state can be obtained through an attorney. However, you may also locate these documents through other sources such as stationery stores, your state legislature or Probate Court. You do not have to hire an attorney in order to sign these legal documents.

However, not everyone is comfortable with the standard Advance Medical Directive language provided in a state statute. For individuals who want to ensure their advance directive reflects a pro-life/anti-euthanasia position, we recommend a document created by the International Task Force on Euthanasia and Assisted Suicide. This document, entitled the "Protective Medical Decisions Document" (PMDD), defines and prohibits euthanasia, as well as stating that "ordinary nursing and medical care and pain relief appropriate to your condition be provided." The PMDD is a general Durable Power of Attorney which allows the signer to name a trusted family member or friend to make medical decisions in the event the signer is incapacitated for any reason, not just terminal illness. The PMDD may be used in any state and may be attached to the advance directive form(s) approved by your state legislature. For copies, contact:

International Task Force on Euthanasia and Assisted Suicide P.O. Box 760 Steubenville, OH 43952 (740) 282-3810

A suggested donation of $8 is requested to cover shipping and handling.

(This fact sheet is intended as general information and does not constitute legal or medical advice. For professional counsel, please contact an attorney or physician. State laws vary regarding the legality and particular details of Advance Medical Directives.)

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