Health documents alone cannot protect people in New York. Still, they help to put measures in place that do offer some protection. How well you choose the people tied up with your documentation, whether you keep them updated and how carefully created they are, all determine effectiveness.
According to Forbes, the first health care document you need to establish is a health care proxy. It names the person who makes health decisions for you should you ever become incapacitated. Unfortunately, many people believe only sick and elderly people need this. Anyone can get into an accident and become unable to make decisions for themselves.
The follow-up document you need for this is a living well or medical directive. This puts instructions in place on preferences related to your health care. This document helps to ensure the decisions people make while you are incapacitated are the ones you would have made for yourself.
You may also want to consider a HIPAA form. In 1996, the government put measures in place to keep your health information confidential. The downside to this is that family members may not receive information about your health condition, such as key updates. If they have this document and it is signed by you, they need to present it once they arrive at the health facility.
Finally, consider a Do Not Resuscitate form. If you already have a medical directive, you may wonder why you need this. Unfortunately, emergency medical services may decide not to accept the instructions outlined there. They are more likely to follow a DNR co-signed by your physician. If you prefer to be resuscitated, then you may skip this step.
This article shares information from Forbes on the four health documents you need to protect yourself. It should not be used in place of medical or legal advice.