Fifty-nine healthy senior center participants were interviewed to determine how, when, and why the durable power of attorney for health care is being used. The 21 users of the durable power of attorney for health care executed a form for the expected reasons; however, a majority had not given a copy of the form to their physician and few had discussed details of their preferences with the proxy. Of the 38 nonusers, the most frequent reasons for not executing a durable power of attorney for health care were: lack of awareness of the form, procrastination, and difficulty choosing a proxy. The new Patient Self-Determination Act requiring hospitals to inform patients of advance directives will help to overcome some of the obstacles in use of the durable power of attorney for health care; however, community education must still be encouraged.
(Arch Intern Med. 1992;152:292-296)
Roe JM, Goldstein MK, Massey K, Pascoe D. Durable Power of Attorney for Health Care: A Survey of Senior Center Participants. Arch Intern Med. 1992;152(2):292–296. doi:10.1001/archinte.1992.00400140046011
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