Pre-mortal provision

BMJ 2001; 322 doi: (Published 02 June 2001) Cite this as: BMJ 2001;322:1342
  1. Douglas Black, retired consultant physician
  1. The Old Forge, Whitchurch-on-Thames

    When you get into your 80s you are likely to experience intimations of mortality; and, for that mortality, some provision should perhaps be made. I have developed a growth in my pancreas, which is as deep seated as mischief can get, but must emphasise that my own decisions were made some years ago. There are two specific ways in which a good lawyer can be of help—a “living will” and a “delayed power of attorney.”

    The living will gives legal force to whatever stipulations you may wish to make in relation to your medical care during the period of illness that is likely to precede death—unless, of course, that is mercifully (but selfishly) sudden. Such stipulations …

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