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A living will is one type of advance directive. Living Will is often accompanied by a specific type of power of attorney or health care proxy. These are legal instruments that are usually notarized.

A good time to write and complete your Living Will is when you are healthy. To wait until you are in the hospital, and possibly unable to communicate in any way with anyone, is too late. What this important legal document does is provide specific instructions to your loved ones and to the physicians as to what level of medical care you want to receive while your are in the hospital, and to what extent you want to be resuscitated or maintained on life support if you are unconscious.
A living will is a statement that authorizes someone whether to be kept alive by a life support system should a person become terminally ill or is in a prolonged and irreversible vegetative state. It is concerning serious questions such as, tube feeding, artificial hydration and pain medication. A living will becomes necessary if and when a person is unable to communicate on his/her own. Moreover, some hospitals do require such a document when admitting a patient just in case.
A Living Will, sometimes referred to as an advanced medical directive is a document which lets you decide whether or not to be kept on artificial life support. The document appoints someone as your health care power of attorney to make important health care decisions on your behalf, based on your prior direction, when you are no longer able to do so.