Baptist Patient Forms You Need
Getting Your Medical Paperwork in Order
It is a good idea to prepare an advanced medical directive–a legal document that lets your health care providers and family know how you want to be cared for--in case something happens and you become unable to make decisions for yourself. You should discuss your wishes with your physician and family members in advance so they can clearly understand your decisions.
There are several legal documents that are types of medical directives. Examples include a living will, a durable power of attorney for health care, advance care plan, and appointment of a health care agent. Each of these documents either allows you to appoint someone to make decisions for you in the event you become unable to make decisions or allows you to state what types of treatment you do or do not want. Some documents allow you to do both.
If you already have a durable power of attorney for healthcare or a living will, please bring a copy of it with you to the hospital. If you don't already have these documents, you can download and complete an advance directive by clicking on the links below. Please choose a form that matches the state in which you live. Make sure you sign the form(s) and follow the instructions for either having two witnesses sign in your presence or having your signature notarized before you come to the hospital. The two Tennessee forms were created by the Tennessee Department of Health to make it easier for Tennessee residents to create their own advanced directive without the need for an attorney. The Mississippi advanced care directive is the same language as is contained in the Mississippi statute on advanced care directives.
The statutes in Arkansas differ somewhat from the statutes in Tennessee and Mississippi. Arkansas recognizes the traditional durable power of attorney and the statutes also give sample language that you can use to make a declaration in the event that you're diagnosed with a terminal condition and in the event that you become permanently unconscious. Complete the two forms for the State of Arkansas below and you will have the two documents that create the essentials of a living will in Arkansas.
If you have a medical file at home, it should include the following items that you should also bring with you to the hospital. If you do not have an at-home file with this information, it is a good idea to create one before you are admitted to the hospital.
Your at-home file should include:
- A completed, signed and notarized (or witnessed) living will and durable power of attorney for healthcare decision making form
- A list of your current medications, including any over-the-counter drugs, herbal medicines and alternative products (include the dose, frequency and reason for taking each.)
- A list of all your allergies, including food, environmental and medication allergies
- A list of your physicians and their phone numbers
- A list of all pharmacies you use and their phone numbers
Ask a trusted family member or friend to be your advocate, the Joint Commission recommends. Your advocate can assist you during stressful moments, remembering things you can't, making sure your wishes are respected, etc. It's a good idea to ask your advocate to stay with you in the hospital.