Heading off to college is an exciting time. If you are 18 there are laws that are designed to protect your privacy even from your parents. Most young adults welcome these. However, one law called the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act or “HIPAA” may prevent your parents from receiving vital medical information about you in the case of an emergency. In short, doctors or hospitals may refuse to discuss your situation even in an emergency. This short video describes how HIPAA works and what you can do to insure that your parents can receive the information to take care of you.
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Short video explaining HIPAA
This short video describes the DocuBank Card and Service
Advance Healthcare Directives the Living Will
Advanced healthcare directives sometimes called “Living Wills” are legal documents which instruct health care providers of the level of care you desire if you are unable to speak for yourself. Generally three conditions are anticipated 1) terminal condition, 2) persistently unconscious and 3) end-stage condition. If the patient is unable to communicate the Living Will provides health care providers with instructions. Oklahoma’s statutory form suggests three levels of treatment to chose from:
Do everything possible to extend life including artificially administering nutrition and hydration if I unable to take these by mouth.
Do not provide any life extending treatments but do artificially provide nutrition and hydration if I unable to take these by mouth.
Do not provide any life extending treatments and do not artificially provide nutrition of hydration is I am to by take these by mouth.
Patients are no limited to these options and can provide detailed instructions.
Health Care Proxy
You may also chose a Health Care Proxy to make medical treatment decisions for you in the event that you are unable to make such decisions. Your proxy can make decisions to the extent that they do not conflict with your Living Will. Communication with persons selected as a health care proxy is important.
Organs and Tissue Donation
Oklahoma’s form provides an area that allows for the donation of selected organs, tissue or the entire body. These may be donated for another recipient, research or teaching.
Here is a short video that dramatizes the issues that Advance Healthcare Directives are designed to address.