You should be filling out advanced directives earlier than you may think

Health Check

TOPEKA, Kan. (KSNT) – The coronavirus pandemic has increased the amount of people filling out advanced directives, according to Kansas State University Assistant Professor Erin Yelland.

You may find yourself wondering ‘Wait, how do I do that, and when?’

“It’s really important, whether we’re in a pandemic or not, that we’re considering getting these documents completed because they really are an asset to your future self,” Yelland said.

Advanced directives are those important documents such as your living will and durable power of attorney, which state the healthcare decisions you would want to be made for yourself and who you would trust to make them if you cannot.

When filling out these forms for the first time, you should really contemplate those important decisions, like going on life support or not, and who you would feel most comfortable making those decisions for you, Yelland said.

One of the biggest mistakes Yelland sees people make is not explaining to their other family members why they made these decisions, and she recommended doing so.

You can begin applying for advanced directives once you turn 18, and should do so then due to the uncertainty of an accident happening, Yelland said.

Advanced directives forms are available on the K-State Research and Extension’s website, or through an attorney.

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