Healthcare Proxy

Under New York law, an individual may appoint someone he or she trusts, for example, a family member or close friend, to decide about medical treatment if she loses the ability to decide for herself. You can do this by using a health care proxy in which a health care agent is appointed to make sure that health care providers follow your wishes. The agent can also decide how her wishes apply as her medical condition changes. Hospitals, nursing homes, doctors and other health care professionals must follow the agents' decisions as if they were the patients'. The individual can give her health care agent as little or as much authority as she wants. She can allow the agent to decide about all health care or only certain treatments.

What is the difference between a living will and health care proxy?
A living will (advance health care directive) is a written statement of an individual's wishes regarding medical treatment. The statement is to be followed if the individual is unable to provide instructions at the time medical decisions need to be made. The health care proxy is significantly different from the living will in that it empowers another person (the agent) to make health care decisions if the patient cannot do so herself. The living will, on the other hand, has no such provision but enables a person to express her own choices regarding medical treatment. It makes sense to utilize both a living will and a health care proxy

Things to consider and bring to the Healthcare Proxy meeting.

Your first, middle and surname and current address.

The first, middle and surname as well as full address and telephone number of the person you are designating as your health care agent. This is someone you trust to make health care decisions in the event that you are incapacitated and unable to make those decisions yourself. You need to choose someone that you not only trust, but is knowledgeable and knows your preferences, meaning that you have discussed in detail your health care directives with him or her.

The first, middle and surname as well as full address and telephone number of the person you are designating as your alternate or substitute health care agent in the event that the person that you have initially designated is not able to be reached or is incapacitated for any reason themselves.

The current language of this form also gives the person that you designate for your health care proxy to have access to your health records which will assist them in making informed and educated decisions and allow them to be your "personal representative" under the Standards for Privacy of Individually Identifiable Health Information (the Privacy Rule) under the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA), or any amendment thereto, and therefore shall have complete authority, as you would if able, to consent to the full and complete release of your medical records.

How do I arrange for an initial consult?
You are invited to contact us by phone or via email. We can be reached Monday through Friday at 607+569-2181, or at your convenience or by visiting our Contact Us page on this web site.