What is a Do Not Resuscitate Order in New Jersey?
Wills are not just for leaving behind your assets. These legal documents can also help you decide how you want to live your life, how you want to be treated by medical professionals, and ultimately how you want to end your life. A Do Not Resuscitate Order is a prime example of how wills in New Jersey can have a notable impact on your life. Medical agreements such as these make up some of the most important facets of your Living Will.
If you need assistance as you plan for the future, it is always a good idea to team up with an attorney who has considerable experience in estate planning. Whether you are planning to establish a Trust, a Last Will and Testament, or a Living Will, these legal experts can make sure that everything is in order.
The DNR Order Explained
In the early 80s, patients in New Jersey were given the right to avoid aggressive, intrusive, and uncomfortable medical treatments at the end of their lives. Instead of going through these ordeals and experiencing unnecessary suffering, these individuals were given the legal ability to end their lives with dignity, thanks to a Do Not Resuscitate Order. However, Emergency Medical Services (EMS) official guidelines state that all patients must be given CPR unless they are obviously dead, or if EMS responders are directly presented with a signed DNR that is valid in the state of New Jersey.
In 1997, the Medical Society of New Jersey addressed these issues by implementing the New Jersey Out-of-Hospital DNR protocol. This new protocol allows patients to wear an official bracelet that tells EMS responders of their desire to avoid CPR. This also means that the DNR protocol will be respected even if patients are choosing to live out their last days at home instead of in a hospital.
Obtaining a DNR is relatively easy. You can find a form at your hospital or download one from the website of the New Jersey Health Association.
Living Wills and Advance Directives
A DNR order is not the only way you can maintain control over your healthcare treatment. Creating an Advance Directive is another way in which you can decide how you want your care to be handled if you are incapacitated. You can also use an Advance Directive to appoint someone else to make medical decisions for you.
A Living Will also helps you outline what kind of medical care you want if you are diagnosed with a terminal illness. These legal documents can perform as Advance Directives if you are permanently incapacitated. For example, you may be in a medically-induced coma with no way to recover. In this case, your healthcare providers may refer to your Living Will and see that you do not want to continue to receive medical care in this situation.
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