Legal Considerations

Healthcare and matters related to caregiving are heavily regulated because negative outcomes may result in death or lifetime disabilities. Therefore, hundreds of laws exist to protect the privacy, health, and safety of those who access and interact with the healthcare community or need services related to insurance, mental, physical, or emotional health.
In addition, the government attempts to pass laws and regulations that provide fair and equal access to treatments to ensure an individual’s right to decide on self-care. I’ve worked in healthcare for 30 years and am familiar with many of these laws. Understanding how these laws work and the basis for why they exist will assist you in obtaining the help you may need to protect your rights to care.

Understanding Legal Terms Related to Medical Decisions

Virginia’s Uniform Power of Attorney Act  §64.2-1600 Code of Virginia   What is the Power of Attorney (POA)? A “Power of Attorney” (POA) means that you have designated someone to act as your agent if you cannot make decisions for yourself. Usually, a written legal document spells out the agent’s decision-making authority. Most general POAs […]

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Determining Who Has Authority

The Care Recipient Always Has Final Decision-Making Authority Provided Competency Is Present   Determining who has authority and the right to final decision-making is often unclear. The person receiving care always maintains final decision-making authority over his care, as long as he remains competent. However, other family members may want to have a say in the

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