Post # 1
I live in Nevada.
A big reason why I tried to rush my Ex-FI into marrying at the courthouse last fall was so he would have complete say-so over what happens to me, in case of an accident or something catastrophic and to try to force my Mom or siblings out of the role of being next of kin, because I don’t trust any of them, they’ve truly betrayed me in the past with this stuff. His parents said that we didn’t have to marry, a Power of Attorney + a living will would cover everything fine.
He dumped me and I replaced him with my male best friend on the paperwork.
I’ve been dealing with some medical stuff at present and last night, had a major emergency. I always keep a notarized card stating that MyBestFriend was responsible for what a next of kin is responsible for. The Hospital did NOT contact my best friend, they found my Mom’s number on my cell and called HER. She made statements about what she allowed for treatment that I was NOT okay with. When I was stabilized and sent home, I found out what happened and was IRATE.
Is there some legal, airtight way of making someone my next of kin so this kind of thing won’t happen again? Apparently, my Power of Attorney and Living Will seem to be no better than the paper they are written upon.
Post # 3
Does your phone have ICE contacts designated? Or could you get a bracelet like the RoadID ones that has your preferred emergency info right on your wrist?
This doesn’t solve your question, really, but it might help the practical aspect. :
Post # 4
I work in the health field. Aside from making someone your POA or having a will, you can also make someone your “legal guardian” in case you can’t make decisions. The hospital made a big mistake, they should have called your POA. If they couldn’t contact your POA then at that point they should have tried your “next of kin” which is your mom.
What is it that you do not want done to you? You could also set up a DNR (do not resuscitate) order.
Just google “advance directives” and find out what people do in your state, etc. Also, if this is very important to you I would wear a metal tag necklace with this info on it just in case.
Post # 5
Well, in an emergency a hospital might just do whatever they think is necessary–ie, the cell phone seems like an obvious choice, especially over sorting through someone’s wallet.
I’m not sure that that the problem is the Living Will or Power of Attorney; I think the problem in this case was your cellphone. Was your mother listed as “Mom” in contacts? Or with the same last name as yours? Consider switching the name out for just her first name or her first + maiden. Then, take your emergency contact and list them under something like “Emergency contact.” That way, if you’re ever caught in an emergency again, your cell phone will lead them to the right person.
Post # 6
I’m pretty sure that legally you can’t get much more official then power of attorney/living will etc. You may be able to have a note added to your medical records listing your best friend as your next of kin. Otherwise I would second the idea of a medical alert bracelet and ICE contacts in your phone. In an accident the EMT and hospital aren’t going to know anything about your situation, so those are your best bets to notify them.
Post # 7
You can give some of the rights of next of kin, but not all. If you google rights & same sex marriages I’m sure you’ll get some good hits that will tell you what you can contract (e.g. POA, living will, etc.) and what you can’t. (I think the hospital might be able to refuse to have your friend in the room but they can’t refuse say a spouse?) Good for you for taking the steps you have already, just make sure your friend knows specifically what you want done in situations. That means don’t tell her “no heroic measures” unless you explain what you think a heroic measure is – rescuitation? life support? IV? blood transfusions? Everyone varies, and you should get really specific and detailed.
Regarding the hospital, they screwed up and should acknowledge it. Ask them how it happened, and what they will do to ensure it doesn’t happen again to you or someone else. And as another posted mentioned, don’t have her in your phone as “mom” or with your last name.
Post # 8
Definitely make your designated person your ICE. I have Mom as Mom, Dad as Dad, and both their numbers are under ICE, but I will obviously change that to FH once we get to that stage of the game.
Post # 9
@LuluInLove: I don’t do blood transfusions. That’s the biggie. My family knows this and the last time something similar happened about six years ago, I hadn’t married my Ex-H, and Mom was called and authorized a transfusion.
I have ICE contacts on my phone. My best friend is one of the three. The others are his sister (also a friend) and his Mom (another friend). My Mom is not an ICE contact.
ETA: I’m going to try the necklace or bracelet ID thing. Right now, I don’t really have family close by and my friends are all that I have…..my Mom has never respected my wishes once I became an adult and this process of trying to keep her out has been ongoing for the past decade. As I said, the rest of family is just as bad.
Post # 10
I’m a little confused. Is your friend officially your health care POA? How did the hospital get your mother’s phone number? If it was via your phone, and the number is listed under “Mom”, I would change it to just her first name as someone else suggested. Also, just FYI, in the case of a true emergency, if you are incapacitated, you may receive blood products in transit to the ED, or in the trauma bay, as the paramedics and trauma staff will not check with your POA if your injuries are life threatening. You may want to consider wearing a medical alert bracelet that states your wishes.
Post # 11
@paperumbrella: Yes, he is my Health Care POA. My Mom is listed as “Mom” on my phone.
I’ll order an Med Alert bracelet ASAP. Seems to be the best way to go about this.
Post # 12
@wolfpackforever: I think that sounds good but be aware as a PP said, if it really is a tramatic emergency, generally the ER/EMTs do whatever they need to that will save the persons life in the interm of finding out their wishes and a next of kin. They don’t want to waste the time of someone bleeding out in the table to find out “Oh, they have objections to blood products!” because if that person dies while they are sitting around not fixing it they can and most likely WILL be sued by the family, especially if your family doesn’t agree with this belief.
Post # 13
agree about living will/POA. Obviously this isn’t going to work for every situation, but if there is a hospital you tend to go to, make sure that they havea copy of the paperwork on file. I’ve gone through this, and it’s helpful for them to have it on file (I hve some chronic health problems so any of the hospitals I go to, have this information). Also a card in your wallet and medical bracelet. I have a card in my wallet with this information, but it also includes my primary care dr’s #, my name/address, and medications – it’s also handy any time I go to the hospital/dr’s office (instead of dragging my medications w/ me, I just have this card).