Staying healthy is what it's all about!

Stephen L. Blythe, D.O.

Board Certified, Family Practice


Machias, Maine 04654

Blythe Family Health Care: New Patient Information

Advanced Directives

What they are:

Advanced Directives are your instructions to your physicians and your loved ones about what you want done medically in certain situations should you not be able to make those decisions. Should your physicians put you on a ventilator if needed? Restart your heart? Put a feeding tube into your stomach? Those with a terminal illness may direct their physicians in the direction of their choosing with Advanced Directives, and we all can direct our physicians with qualifications. An Advanced Directive might say that should you have brain damage from injury or stroke that is felt to be irreversible that you would prefer not to be kept alive with a feeding tube. Your own beliefs may encourage you to state that you want all life-sustaining efforts undertaken. Contrary to some of the political diatribes about "death panels" lately, the goal of our office when it comes to your Advanced Directives is to make sure that YOU make YOUR wishes known while you can. It is not our goal to direct you in one way or another.

Along with Advanced Directives is the Durable Medical Power of Attorney. This is a document that gives another person the legal authority to make medical decisions only should you be unable to make those decisions. Be aware that no power of attorney is needed for doctors to provide life-saving medical care.

If you do not have an Advanced Directive and Designated Medical Surrogate (Power of Attorney), consider  printing out those forms here - no lawyer is needed to complete these forms. They only have to be witnessed by two adults.