Health Care Surrogate

A health care surrogate is a person appointed by a competent adult (the "principal") to make his or her health care decisions in the event the principal is found to be incapacitated.  The powers that can be delegated to the surrogate include general authority to act for the principal and to make decisions in the health care area, to provide informed consent for health care, to be provided access to the principal’s medical records, to apply for benefits on the principal’s behalf, and to authorize the admission, discharge, or transfer of the principal to or from a health care facility.  Although a durable power of attorney can contain a power to make health care decisions, it may be desirable to have someone other than the attorney-in-fact make these decisions.  In addition, it may be desirable to list in detail those types of decisions that can be made.


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