Golden Offers Health Care Proxy Law Information

Martin J. Golden

May 18, 2005

Brooklyn- State Senator Marty Golden (R-C-I, 22nd District), Chairman of the Senate Aging Committee, today is announcing that he has made available informational booklets regarding New York State’s Health Care Proxy Law, along with the Health Care Proxy Form, to the community. Recent events in Florida surrounding the Terri Schiavo case have generated important public awareness regarding health care proxies and living wills.

A Health Care Proxy lets you appoint a health care agent, someone over the age of 18 who you trust, to make health care decisions for you if you are unable to make decisions for yourself. By appointing a health care agent, you can make sure that health care providers follow your wishes. Your agent can also decide how your wishes apply as your medical condition changes and hospitals, doctors and other health care providers must follow your agent’s decision as if they were your own.

Further, you may give the person you select as your health care agent as little or as much authority as your want. You may allow your agent to make all health care decisions or only certain ones. You may also give your agent instructions that he or she has to follow. This form can also be used to document your wishes or instructions with regard to organ and/or tissue donation. It is important to know that you may cancel the authority given to your agent by informing your health care provider either orally or in writing.

Senator Marty Golden stated, "The Terri Schiavo case has opened the eyes of many people to the fact that simply making your wishes known to someone else may not be enough. Preparing a few simple documents can assure your wishes will be followed and met. Further, your completion of a Health Care Proxy form helps to guide those who may be responsible for your future care."

The booklet answers many of the frequently asked questions surrounding health care proxies. To obtain one, you can call Senator Golden’s office at (718) 238-6044 or (718) 627-3659 to have one mailed to you, or you can stop by either of his District Offices at 7403-5th Avenue or at 3610 Quentin Road. Requests can also be submitted via e-mail at