October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month.
Nearly everyone has known someone who has suffered from breast cancer, and 1 in 8 women in the U.S. will be victims of breast cancer. In 2017, it’s estimated that over 250,000 women and men will be diagnosed with breast cancer, and nearly 41,000 will die from it. Too many Floridians experience the pain of watching a loved one suffer, and even more lack the resources to handle the patient’s needs. To ensure the patient receives the best medical and financial care, it’s vital to check to see if they have a proper and current healthcare surrogacy and durable power of attorney that allows you to assist them when making important decisions regarding healthcare treatments and medicine.
Our family at Heuler-Wakeman Law Group knows how awful this experience is, and we want to help your family with the intricate legal issues involved in Florida’s health care, so you can focus on what’s most important: improving your health or helping your friend or family member recover. Call us to learn about healthcare planning, and how we can use our resources to make things easier for you.
What is a Healthcare Surrogate?
A healthcare surrogate is an adult whom you choose to help assist you to make healthcare decisions or to make them in your place if you are unable to do so, whether due to routine procedures like being placed under anesthesia or if you are diagnosed with a condition affecting your decision-making abilities. Having a written surrogate designation in place now means avoiding a possible involuntary guardianship, saving time, money, and protecting your right to choose.
Who decided who gets to be my Surrogate?
You do. You can choose who serves, how many Surrogates you’d like at one time, what powers they have, and you can even select back-ups, or “alternates,” in case your Surrogate is unable to serve. Typically, spouses choose each other; parents choose their children; and young and single adults choose close friends or relatives, but most importantly: the choice is yours!
Why is this important, and why do I need one if I’m young and healthy?
First, we can all get sick at any time and may have a short or long period of inability to make our own medical decisions. For instance, For minors turning 18 and young adults, parents lose the legal right to access their children’s medical records or sign off on surgeries and treatment plans. All adults should prepare a designation of health surrogate as a safeguard for medical decision-making before a crisis occurs.
Please check these resources to meet local caregivers, to learn more about breast cancer, and where to find local help.
 American Cancer Society, 2017