Power of Attorney & Patient Advocate at Bronson Battle Creek Hospital - Bronson Healthcare

Power of Attorney & Patient Advocate

We all want to make our own decisions about the medical treatment we receive. Sometimes a medical condition might prevent us from making those decisions. That's why it's important to have an Advance Directive.

Your Advance Directive should:

  • Describe the type of medical care you want
  • Describe the type of medical care you do not want
  • State who you want to make decisions about your care if you cannot
  • Be reviewed once a year

If you become unable to make your own medical decisions, you want to make sure someone you trust can make decisions for you. You will name that person in a document called a Durable Power of Attorney.

Choosing Your Patient Advocate

The person you choose to make decisions is called a patient advocate. A patient advocate should be:

  • At least 18 years old
  • Able to make important decisions
  • Aware of your wishes and willing to follow them

To be a patient advocate, a person must sign an acceptance form

What Decisions Can a Patient Advocate Make?

The patient advocate only makes decisions when you can’t. You can give your patient advocate the power to:

  • Consent to or refuse medical treatment
  • Arrange for home healthcare
  • Admit you to a nursing home
  • Withhold treatment or food and water

Creating a Durable Power of Attorney

There is no standard form for a Durable Power of Attorney document. You can use Bronson’s form, write your own or have a lawyer create one for you. A Durable Power of Attorney must be signed by you and witnessed by two adults. Witnesses cannot be:

  • A family member
  • The patient advocate
  • An employee of the healthcare facility where you are a patient

If you have questions, call Medical Social Work at (269) 341-7943.

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