I have read this booklet and it definitely seems to encourage people to write decisions about their care. However, some of the examples and questions they say people should ask themselves seem to devalue human life. Former President Bush stopped this book from being handed out and now President Obama is bringing it back with changes. As we put government in control of our health care, we are politicizing end of life care and the type of materials available could change every four years.
As we read further in this section, we find the bill asks for changes to the “Medicare and You Handbook.”
(A) IN GENERAL.—Not later than 1 year after the date of the
enactment of this Act, the Secretary of Health and Human
Services shall update the online version of the Medicare & You
Handbook to include the following:
(i) An explanation of advance care planning and advance
(I) living wills;
(II) durable power of attorney;
(III) orders of life-sustaining treatment; and
(IV) health care proxies.
(ii) A description of Federal and State resources available to
assist individuals and their families with advance care
planning and advance directives, including--
(I) available State legal service organizations to
assist individuals with advance care planning,
including those organizations that receive
funding pursuant to the Older Americans Act of
1965 (42 U.S.C. 93001 et seq.);
(II) website links or addresses for State-specific
advance directive forms; and
(III) any additional information, as determined by
(pages 432-434 of HR 3200)
The “Medicare and You Handbook” can be viewed at the following link:
It already contains information about advance directives and living wills. What changes are going to be made by the government?
As you write your living will, make sure you know the beliefs of the people supplying the information. There is a program that helps people have pro-life living wills. If you are interested, go to one of these sites http://www.nrlc.org/News_and_Views/April09/nv040709part2.html or http://www.alliancedefensefund.org/willtolive/Default.aspx.