Nov 15 2007
01:57 pm
By: WhitesCreek

What a way...

Man! What a way to recycle! What a loving and giving thing to do. Be sure to mark your driver's license or leave written documentation so that your family and friends know your wishes on organ donating.

Wendy @ KRB

This is a wonderful story...

And illustrative of the need for more people to spread the positive word about organ donation. One donation of all usable organs can save the lives or sight of up to a dozen people. That's a helluva return on investment.

Many people are so negative about it and ignorant of how it works, it's sad. I'm glad to see this kind of story getting some play, as opposed to the kind of negative stories so often hitting the public.


Put It In Writing

I want to echo what KRB said. In addition to the driver's license, a good Living Will (which can make sense for other reasons) also allows you to specify whether you want your body donated. There have been free Living Will seminars by the Roane County Bar Association in the past, and I will be sure to try to post if another one is scheduled.

Mark is right...

But, in order to see to it that your wishes are carried out, make it MORE than a living will. I have seen, time and time again, others over-ride the wishes expressed in a living will. A living will is only an expression of your wishes at the time you make it. It has no legal effect whatever.

In addition to a living will, to make sure your wishes are adhered to, someone need the LEGAL ability to speak with your voice if/when you are unable to do so for yourself. That's why you need MORE than a Living Will to insure that that happens.

In Tennessee, that means you go here (link...)
and look at the forms and use them. You specifically need to look at Medical Power of Attorney. (Used to be known as Durable Power of Attorney, Healthcare).

Somebody knowing your wishes is useless if ONE single family member wants to over-ride them when you are unable to enforce it yourself. Or a physician. But if you have someone with Medical Power of Attorney, when you cannot speak for yourself, when that person speaks, it is legally as if it is coming directly from you.

There's a lot to do to insure your final wishes are adhered to. This is a very good place to get the documents that will bind in Tennessee. Living Will simply will not get it alone.


Health Care Agent/ Power of Attorney

A HealthCare Power of Attorney is also a good idea, if you have someone that you want to make healthcare decisions on your behalf. An attorney can provide you with a POA that explicitly provides the agent with the power to donate your organs. The Tennessee Department of Health's Appointment of Health Care Agent Form is more general, and does not expressly specify that the agent has that power. Factors one should consider include the likelihood of your document being reviewed (A) in an emergency and/or (B) in another jurisdiction. If you want advice on whether a Living Will, Healthcare Power of Attorney, and/or Advance Care Directive is appropriate for your circumstances, watch for the next Roane County Bar healthcare planning seminar.

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