Performance Improvement 2009. How Has the Law of Advance Directives Advanced?


This study sought the best ways to promote use of advance directives among adults as a way for them to choose their end-of-life care. The study examined the legislative history of advance directives.

Legislative provisions addressing health care advance directives evolved quickly, starting with California’s adoption of the first living will statute in 1976.
States began crafting special durable powers of attorney for health care statutes or adding proxy provisions to their living will statutes. State legislative action took place roughly from the mid-1980s to the mid-1990s. Law and practice are now moving toward a more flexible communications approach, bridging the gap between patient desires — expressed through an advance directive — and plans of care reflected in physician orders (sometimes referred to as Physicians’ Orders for Life-Sustaining Treatment).

Report Title: Advance Directives and Advance Care Planning: Legal and Policy Issues
Agency Sponsor: ASPE-ODALTCP, Office of Disability, Aging, and Long-Term Care Policy
Federal Contact: Judith Peres, 202-690-6443
Performer: American Bar Association, Commission on Law and Aging
PIC ID: 8906

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"PerformanceImprovement2009.pdf" (pdf, 1.26Mb)

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