Advance Directive

April 16th is National Healthcare Decisions Day.

An Advanced Directive is a document that gives you a voice in your healthcare when you are unable to speak for yourself and gives your loved ones the peace of mind that they are honoring your wishes.

Want to learn more? Holy Redeemer is participating in this national event to provide information.


Tuesday, April 16 – 11:30am to 10:00pm at Holy Redeemer Hospital
Our team will be on hand throughout the day to answer your questions. Register for this event.

Thursday, April 18 – 2:00pm to 3:30pm at Spark! Transformation Center
Join us for presentations on Advanced Directives and how to start the conversation with your loved ones. Register for this event.

Can’t attend, but have a question? Call Chaplain Donna Lima-Monteiro at 215-938-4197.

Making Your Own Health Care Decisions

As a competent adult, you have the fundamental right, in collaboration with your health care providers, to control decisions about your own health care. You have the right to make voluntary, informed choices to accept or refuse any treatment, service or procedure used to diagnose, treat or care for your physical or mental condition, including life-sustaining treatment.

So long as you have the ability to understand the nature of your medical condition and the benefits, risks and burdens of the course of treatment and care recommended by your physician and its alternatives and are able to reach an informed decision, you have the right to make your own health care decision.

If you should lose these abilities and become incapable of making your own decision, meaning that you have lost decision-making capacity, then your health care providers will look to your prior written advance directive and /or to family members to make decisions on your behalf. A determination that you have lost decision-making capacity MUST be made by your attending physician and as necessary, one or more additional physicians who personally examine you. 

Planning Ahead: Advance Directive for Health Care

By writing an Advance Directive, you may exercise your right to plan ahead for, and control decisions about your health care in the event that you become unable to make your own decisions in the future. Your advance directive may be used to accept or to refuse any treatment, service or procedure used to diagnose, treat or care for your physical or mental condition, including life-sustaining treatment.

You may choose among three types of advance directives:

(1) By writing a Durable Power of Attorney for Health Care, you may designate another person, such as a family member or friend, to make decisions on your behalf.
(2) By writing a Living Will, you may state your directions and wishes for medical treatments you wish to accept or reject in certain circumstances.
(3) By writing a combined directive you may designate a health care representative to act on your behalf and provide him/her with a written statement of your treatment wishes.

Please remember that you are not required by law to have an advance directive. If you choose to complete an advance directive, you may wish to consult your attorney, although an attorney is not required.

You may choose to use one of the forms provided below, you may use a form obtained from another source, or you may write your own directive. It is not necessary to have an advance directive notarized.


Pennsylvania Catholic Conference Combined Living Will and Health Care Power of Attorney
Living Wills and Powers of Attorney in Pennsylvania
Patient Self-Determination Act: Advance Directive