If you develop an illness and cannot communicate your medical wishes, Massachusetts law allows you to sign a health care proxy document.
You complete this document by signing it before two witnesses.
You can name the persons you allow to communicate your medical wishes.
Remember, there are two rules you must follow.
And then, when in proper form, this document allows the person you name to speak up for you for medical reasons.
But first, a very important step must be followed.
For the health care proxy to be active, Massachusetts law requires that your doctor first state in writing that you are unable to meaningfully communicate about your medical wishes.
To be active, this final steps of a doctor's writing is needed.
You can revoke a health care proxy that you've signed. And, even if it's active and you're ill, you can continue to speak up for your own health care decision making.
A related document is called the MOLST form. A medical doctor signs this form after discussing end of life treatment with you.
It is more specific than a health care proxy. The MOLST form is PINK in color, and so will stand out in your wallet or purse if you were discovered uncommunicative.