Planning for the Future: Ensuring Your Healthcare Wishes Are Heard

Posted on:

July 4, 2024

As we navigate the journey of life, it’s crucial to ensure our healthcare wishes are known and respected, especially during challenging times. One of the most profound gifts we can give our loved ones is clarity about our end-of-life decisions.

This is where advanced healthcare directives, often referred to as “living wills,” come into play. These legally binding documents outline your preferences for medical care should you become unable to communicate your wishes.

To further empower your loved ones, consider appointing a healthcare power of attorney. This trusted individual, a family member or friend, will act as your legal healthcare representative, making decisions based on your previously expressed desires.

It’s important to note that a healthcare power of attorney is distinct from a financial power of attorney. While both grant someone the authority to act on your behalf, a healthcare power of attorney specifically addresses medical decisions, while a financial power of attorney handles financial matters. Medical records often encounter individuals who misunderstand this distinction, so it’s crucial to be clear about the purpose of each document.

For support in creating your advanced healthcare directives, consider exploring resources like Honoring Choices, a national organization dedicated to helping individuals plan for their end-of-life care. You can find valuable information and resources on their website: 

Remember, both the advanced healthcare directive and healthcare power of attorney are only activated when you are unable to communicate your own healthcare choices.

For guidance and support in creating these vital documents, please reach out to Chaplain Josiah Hoagland at the hospital, 218-616-3390.

About CHI St. Joseph’s Health

CHI St. Joseph’s Health is a 25-bed critical access hospital serving communities in Hubbard, Becker, Cass and Wadena Counties since 1946. In recent years, CHI St. Joseph’s Health’s award-winning teams received several national honors including: The Joint Commission Top Performer on Key Quality Measures in surgery; Top 100 Critical Access Hospital, HealthStrong; WomenCertified’s America’s Best Hospitals Women’s Choice Award in obstetrics; and the Studer Group Fire Starter Healthcare Organization of the Month among other national, regional and state recognitions.

About CHI

Catholic Health Initiatives, one of the nation’s largest health systems, was formed in 1996 to strengthen the Catholic health ministry for the future. With deep roots in the tradition of expressing Christ’s love by caring for those in need, Catholic Health Initiatives serves more than four million people each year through acute care hospitals; long-term care, assisted and residential-living facilities; community-based health services; home care; research and development; and reference laboratory services.


Contact: Sonja Day
Communication/Marketing Manager
CHI St. Joseph’s Health
600 Pleasant Avenue
Park Rapids, MN  56470