Why You Must Designate a Healthcare Advocate Before You Need One

Posted on Tuesday, June 20, 2023
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by Outside Contributor
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Healthcare

Certain medical conditions can limit your ability to care for yourself. For instance, Alzheimer’s is a chronic degenerative issue that will cause increasing neurological symptoms. At some point, a person with Alzheimer’s will require a representative to ensure they receive the proper treatment. That’s where healthcare advocates come in.

What Is a Healthcare Advocate?

Healthcare advocates communicate important information about your medical preferences to doctors and other specialists. For example, people with terminal conditions often refuse life-preserving treatments in favor of palliative or comfort care. Your advocate will make sure the medical staff understands your wishes explicitly. Advocates can also communicate this information to your loved ones, who might have a hard time understanding your directives on their own.

Who Should You Choose for the Role?

Because they have such a vital responsibility, selecting the right healthcare advocate is hugely important. First and foremost, the person must be willing to assume the role. A person with a large family or hectic lifestyle may not have the time to devote to being your representative. Additionally, the person must be willing to carry out your exact wishes. They cannot let personal beliefs or feelings get in the way, especially when they’re dealing with family members, who may have tough questions regarding the care you prefer.

No matter who you pick, it’s crucial that your advocate has access to essential medical records. There’s a free app that offers secure, convenient storage of medical information, including prescriptions, treatments, and more. Additionally, it’s very easy to share information with others when needed, whether it’s a caregiver, medical professional, or healthcare advocate.

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