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It’s not something we like to think about, but it’s important: if you are seriously ill or injured and unable to express your decisions regarding medical care, how can you be sure your wishes are carried out? “In Colorado, no one can automatically make medical decisions for you. This means not even your spouse, adult children, nor doctor. Because of this, it is very important to name a person who would speak for you based on your wishes.” That is why anyone 18 and older – not just seniors – should document those wishes before something happens.
But, knowing all the legal steps needed for Advance Care Planning can be confusing, so the University of Colorado Denver has set up a helpful website, coloradocareplanning.org. By following the guidance on this easy-to-use site, you can learn how to legally designate a decision-maker and document your wishes. The site also includes information on local community resources for general medical planning and for COVID-19.
Another helpful resource is the Colorado Legislative Council’s 2020 Healthcare Resource Book. Use this guidebook as a reference for understanding Colorado healthcare laws and regulations, programs, and financing. Additional information can be found on the Colorado Department of Regulatory Agencies’ health insurance website.
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