It is important for seniors to keep all important medical documents handy. Not having these documents in order can make an unexpected medical emergency more difficult for the family members and medical providers. This can delay important medical decisions, and result in the withholding of medical records. Also, without proper medical documents in place, wishes for end-of-life care might not be followed properly. As a provider of senior assisted living and other senior care options, we share a list of some of the important medical documents that are important for seniors.
A health care power of attorney assigns a medical proxy for the senior person. The medical proxy will be responsible for taking the medical decisions for the senior person when the senior is unable to take these decisions.
These documents are also called health care directives or living wills, and tell the physician or medical team to withhold life-saving treatments that are predetermined if the condition of the person is irreversible or terminal.
As per the Health Insurance Protection and Portability Act (HIPPA), doctors are prohibited from releasing medical information of a patient without the expressed consent of the patient. Having the authorization to release medical records makes sure that the physicians will be able to talk to the family members of the senior person about the medical conditions that the person is suffering from and offer updates on the health of the person.
This is a document signaling emergency responders and non-hospital medical service providers that the senior person wishes to forgo some of the emergency life-saving procedures such as breathing tubes, ventilators, CPR, etc.
This is the documentation about medical conditions, medicines, and various allergies of the senior person, and helps healthcare providers make quick decisions in the event of an emergency.
It is important to include this document with the medical records of the senior person as it can help family members of the person make necessary plans for the next moves, whether it is senior assisted living or long-term medical rehabilitation in a skilled nursing facility after a medical event.
There are many seniors who have finished some, but not all of the above-mentioned important medical documents. It is the duty of the family members to physically bring these medical documents to their senior loved ones, help them fill the documents, and file them correctly. You should never leave anything to chance when it comes to medical documents of your senior loved one.