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What to Do When a Loved One is Hospitalized

If you or a loved one is hospitalized or incapacitated and unable to make your own medical decisions, it is critical that your family knows where to find your advance medical directive. Here are some additional tips for those of you who have or will experience dealing with a loved one in the hospital:

1. Understand who is in charge. Hospitals have an organizational hierarchy like any other business, and in order for you to both get and give the right information on your loved one, you need to understand who is in charge of their care.

2. Get daily updates from the nurse. It can be difficult for you to catch the primary doctor on his or her rounds, so get your daily updates from the nurse on duty. Hospitals are required to have electronic medical records, so the nurse on duty can look up other nurses’ notes to give you the full picture.

3. If you don’t understand, ask. Medical professional in hospitals are extremely busy, so if you find them spitting out terms you don’t understand, ask them to clarify.

4. Pick one spokesperson for the family. Again, the hospital medical staff is busy, and while you are certainly entitled to updates and care consultations, it will help if you designate one family spokesperson that can then update the entire family.

5. Locate the paperwork. Back to keeping that advance medical directive handy! You need to be sure you have your loved one’s important papers – including the health care directive and/or health care power of attorney – available for hospital records.

6. Control your emotions. Hospitals can be stressful environments for families, but being critical or complaining is rarely productive. Work on managing your emotions if you find things getting out of hand.

The Dorcey Law Firm, PLC, focuses on estate planning and administration for Florida residents. Contact our Fort Myers law firm for your free consultation.

Categories: Estate Planning
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The Dorcey Law Firm, PLC - Fort Myers Attorney
Located at 10181 Six Mile Cypress Pkwy, Suite C, Fort Myers, FL 33966
Phone: (239) 330-6674
Local Phone: (239) 418-0169