Advance Directive

Making Tough Decisions

The purpose of an advance health care directive is to help you make a decision now about how you want to be cared for if you become unable to communicate that to the health care team that is working with you in an emergency situation. Having filled out an advance directive form not only helps the doctors and nurses who are working with you, but it also help your family know how you want to be treated if your life is endangered.


Talking about needing an advance directive is often frightening to us, and we somehow feel that if we don’t even think about it, it won’t ever happen. But emergencies happen to many people. No one ever wakes up and thinks, “Today, I’m going to have a really bad accident,” or, “Today, I’m going to have a heart attack.” But these things do happen to people all of the time, and now is the time to take a few moments to fill out an advance directive for yourself and for your family.

Please click here to open a copy of an advance health care directive form using Adobe’s Acrobat Reader.

Read through the document, and if you have questions, ask your health care provider to help you work your way through them. If you don’t have access to a person who can help you, you can click here to link to the Web site for Kōkua Mau, a project coordinated by Hawai‘i’s Executive Office on Aging. You can use the project’s site to help answer your questions, and you can contact Kōkua Mau to ask for assistance or for more information.