Introduction:

In accordance with the Patient's Rights Law, a person is permitted to assign power of attorney to a representative to make medical decisions on his behalf in future situations in which he may be unable to provide informed consent to medical treatment
In addition, a person who wishes to prepare in advance for a situation in which he may be terminally ill, can prepare a living will or appoint a power of attorney as specified by the guidelines of the Terminally Ill Patient Law.
For more information, see section 16 of the Patient's Rights Law and section 32(15)(a) of the Legal Competency and Guardianship Law.
Warning
Procedure Change
As of 11.04.2017 a procedure change for the preparation of a power of attorney has taken effect.

The Patient's Rights Law, states that medical treatment may not be provided to a patient who has not given informed consent.

  • Section 16 of the law allows anyone who wishes to assign power of attorney to a representative to make medical decisions on their behalf. This applies in a case where one is unable to give informed consent due to a physical, mental, or cognitive state, or any other reason.
  • Assigning power of attorney may eliminate the need to go to court in order to appoint a guardian or receive special instructions for urgent medical treatment.
  • As of 11.04.2017 the appointment of a power of attorney for medical treatment is subject to the general procedures regarding the appointment of continuing power of attorney.
  • For general information on the significance of continuing power of attorney see Power of Attorney in preparation for the inability to make decisions in the future


Target Audience and Prerequisites

  • All adults (18 years and over) with a clear understanding of power of attorney are entitled to assign someone else to act as their representative.
  • A representative must be an adult who is legally competent, and whom the person giving the power of attorney (the grantor) trusts personally, and in terms of judgment.

Stages of the Process

  • A power of attorney for medical issues only should be signed on the continuous power of attorney form (form a).
  • The signing of a continuous power of attorney that deals only with medical issues must be witnessed by a lawyer, licensed doctor, social worker, psychologist, or certified nurse.
  • The representative must also sign the form in front of one of the listed professionals in order to show that he understands the significance of the power of attorney and the responsibility that it entails.
  • The professional who witnesses the signing of the medical power of attorney verifies that the grantor understands the significance of giving the power of attorney and that he knows he can include in it future instructions. The witness also verifies that the power of attorney was given by consent and free will.
  • A medical power of attorney that is not registered with the general guardian is valid for one year. If the power of attorney comes into effect during that year it continues to remain valid.
  • The medical power of attorney also gives authority over psychiatric tests and treatments in the community and hospital - unless it was otherwise established.
  • The following actions require explicit consent in the medical power of attorney without which the representative is not authorized to act:
    • Give consent for psychiatric evaluation
    • Give consent for psychiatric treatment
    • Give consent to be hospitalized in a psychiatric hospital
    • Give consent to be released from a psychiatric hospital
      • If the grantor opposes one of these procedures at the time it is about to happen, the procedure can not be done even if the grantor had initially consented to itת unless the continuing power of attorney was also signed in the presence of a psychiatrist and the grantor had explicitly given authority to the representative to give consent despite his opposition.
      • At the time that this power of attorney is signed the psychiatrist must explain to the grantor the significance of his consent and what the repercussions may be. The psychiatrist should make sure that the power of attorney was granted with free will and consent without any pressure, unfair influences, or exploitation of weakness or distress.
      • In the case of hospitalization, the consent of the power of attorney to hospitalize is valid for 48 hours or until the person is capable of giving his own informed consent.
  • For detailed information on the preparation of a medical power of attorney and its deposition see Preparation and Deposition of a Continuing Power of Attorney.
  • A medical power of attorney that is not registered with the general guardian is valid for one year. If the power of attorney comes into effect during that year it continues to remain valid.

Ending or Canceling a Power of Attorney

  • For information on ending or canceling a power of attorney see:

Power of Attorney for the Treatment of a Terminally Ill Patient

Combined Power of Attorney

  • In the past it was possible for one to appoint a power of attorney for general medical treatments and for the event that he was terminally ill on the same form.
  • In light of the amendment in theLegal Competency and Guardianship Law that came into effect on 11.04.2017, one can no longer assign both of these powers of attorney on the same, combined form. They must be filled out on two separate forms.
  • Combined power of attorney forms that were signed before this date and registered on the Ministry of Health website according to the law will be honored and continue to be valid until their expiration dates (5 years from the approval date).
  • Any future changes or renewal of the current directive must be done in accordance with the Terminally Ill Patient Law (notification of this will be sent at the time of renewal).

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