A MOST directive makes your healthcare wishes known. Making sure your family is taken care of when you pass away is paramount, but estate planning is more than just drafting a will and setting up trusts. It’s easy to overlook one of the most important parts of estate planning—preparing for your own medical future ahead of time. That’s why documents like a Medical Order for Scope of Treatment, often referred to as a MOST form, should be discussed when meeting with an estate planning lawyer

How a MOST Form Works and Why You Need One

The MOST is a bright pink sheet that makes doctors, nursing home staff, and emergency service personnel aware of what you want even if you are unconscious or can’t articulate your thoughts. For instance, if you only want comfort measures taken but would prefer not to be admitted to the hospital if you have a medical emergency, a MOST makes those wishes known. The form specifically covers whether or not you want to receive:

  • Antibiotics
  • CPR
  • Feeding tubes
  • Intubation
  • IV fluids

A Medical Order for Scope of Treatment isn’t needed by everyone, but it is important if you’ve recently received a serious and potentially life-threatening medical diagnosis. To be legally valid in North Carolina, a MOST form must be signed by you, or your legal medical representative, and one of these types of healthcare professionals:

  • Medical doctor
  • Nurse practitioner
  • Physician’s assistant

To ensure your directions are followed, make sure to keep the form with you if you have to move between medical facilities or nursing homes, or display it prominently at your residence if you receive care at home. 

Don’t Put Off Planning for Your Medical Future, Contact Our Experienced Wilmington Estate Planning Attorney Today

The MOST form is just one of many important issues to discuss with your estate planning attorney when preparing for the next stage of your life. Schedule a quick consultation today to make sure the assets you’ve earned don’t end up in the hands of the government or creditors, and that your medical plan is followed even if you’re not able to speak for yourself. 

 
John J. Peck
Wilmington Elder Law, Estate Planning & Asset Protection Attorney