Arizona Health Care Power of Attorney Law

Power of Attorney and Health Care – General – Arizona

A “health care directive” is a document drafted in substantial compliance with this Chapter 32, including a mental health care power of attorney, to deal with a person’s future health care decisions.

A “health care power of attorney” is a written designation of an agent to make health care decisions that meets the requirements of §36-3221 and that comes into effect and is durable as provided in §36-3223(A).

A “living will” is a statement written either by a person who has not written a health care power of attorney or by the principal as an attachment to a health care power of attorney and intended to guide or control the health care treatment decisions that can be made on that person’s behalf.

A “mental health care power of attorney” is a written designation of an agency to make mental health care decisions that meets the requirements of §36-3281.

The “principal” is a person who is the subject of a health care power of attorney.

A “surrogate” is a person authorized to make health care decisions for a patient by a power of attorney, a court order or the provisions of §36-3231.

A person may revoke his own health care directive or disqualify a surrogate by doing any of the following:

Making a written revocation of a health care directive or a written statement to disqualify a surrogate.

Orally notifying the surrogate or a health care provider.

Making a new health care directive.

Any other act that demonstrates a specific intent to revoke or to disqualify a surrogate.

HEALTH CARE POWER OF ATTORNEY (§§ 36-3221 through 36-3224)

 

A person who is an adult may designate another adult individual or other adult individuals to make health care decisions on that person’s behalf by executing a written health care power of attorney that meets all of the following requirements:

Contains language that clearly indicates that the person intends to create a health care power of attorney.

Is dated and signed or marked by the person who is the subject of the health care power of attorney.

Is notarized or is witnessed in writing by at least one adult who affirms that the notary or witness was present when the person dated and signed or marked the health care power of attorney and that the person appeared to be of sound mind and free from duress at the time of execution of the health care power of attorney.

If a person is physically unable to sign or mark a health care power of attorney, the notary or each witness shall verify on the document that the person directly indicated to the notary or witness that the power of attorney expressed the person’s wishes and that the person intended to adopt the power of attorney at that time.

A notary or witness cannot be any of the following:

A person designated to make medical decisions on the principal’s behalf.

A person directly involved with the provision of health care to the principal at the time the health care power of attorney is executed.

If a health care power of attorney is witnessed by only one person, that person may not be related to the principal by blood, marriage or adoption and may not be entitled to any part of the principal’s estate by will or by operation of law at the time that the power of attorney is executed.

The individual designated in a health care power of attorney to make health care decisions is an agent entitled to make and communicate these decisions while the principal is unable to do so.

An agent’s authority to make health care decisions on behalf of the principal is limited only by the express language of the health care power of attorney or by court order as prescribed under §36-3206.

The appointment of a person to act as an agent is effective until that authority is revoked by the principal or by court order.

Any writing that meets the requirements of §36-3221 may be used to create a health care power of attorney. The statutory form is offered as a sample only and does not prevent a person from using other language or another form.
MENTAL HEALTH CARE POWER OF ATTORNEY (§§ 36-3281 through 36-3287)

 

An adult may designate another adult or adults to act as an agent and to make mental health care decisions on that person’s behalf. The principal may also designate an alternate adult or adults to act as agent if the original designated agent or agents are unwilling or unable to act.

An agent may make decisions about mental health treatment on behalf of the principal if the principal is found incapable. “Incapable” means that, in the opinion of a licensed physician who is a specialist in psychiatry or a licensed psychologist, a person is unable to give informed consent as defined in §36-501.

If an adult does not have a mental health care power of attorney, an agent with a health care power of attorney may make decisions about mental health treatment on behalf of the principal if the principal is found incapable. An agent’s decisions must be consistent with any wishes the principal has expressed in the mental health care directive, mental health care power of attorney, health care power of attorney or other advance directive.

An agent cannot be a person who is directly involved with the provision of health care to the principal at the time the mental health care power of attorney is executed.

To be valid, a mental health care power of attorney must:

Be executed by a principal who is not incapable.

Be in writing.

Contain language that clearly indicates that the principal intends to create a mental health care power of attorney.

Be dated and signed or marked by the principal.

Be notarized or witnessed in writing by at least one adult who affirms that the notary or witness was present when the principal dated and signed or marked the mental health care power of attorney and that the principal appeared to be of sound mind and free from duress, fraud or undue influence at that time.

If a mental health care power of attorney expressly provides that the agent can admit the principal to a level one behavioral health facility licensed by the department of health services, each paragraph that grants such authority must be separately initialed by the principal at the time the mental health care power of attorney is signed and witnessed.

If a principal is physically unable to sign or mark a mental health care power of attorney, the notary and each witness shall verify on the document that the principal indicated to the notary or witness that the mental health care power of attorney expressed the principal’s wishes and that the principal intended to adopt the mental health care power of attorney at that time.

A notary or witness cannot be any of the following:

A person designated to make medical decisions on the principal’s behalf.

A professional care provider directly involved with the provision of care to the principal at the time the mental health care power of attorney is executed.

If a mental health care power of attorney is witnessed by only one person, that person cannot be:

Related to the principal by blood, marriage or adoption.

Entitled to any part of the principal’s estate by will or by operation of law at the time that the power of attorney is executed.

A mental health care power of attorney may be used as part of or independent of a health care power of attorney.

An agent may make mental health care decisions for the principal while the principal is incapable.

An agent’s authority to make mental health care decisions is limited only by the express language of the mental health care power of attorney or by a court order.

The appointment of a person to act as an agent is effective until that authority is revoked by the principal or by a court order.

An agent has the same right as the principal to receive information and to review the principal’s medical records regarding proposed mental health treatment and to receive, review and consent to the disclosure of medical records relating to that treatment.

An agent must act consistently with the wishes of the principal as expressed in the mental health care power of attorney. If the principal’s wishes are not expressed in the mental health care power of attorney and are not otherwise known by the agent, the agent must act in accordance with what the agent in good faith believes to be in the principal’s best interests.

An agent may consent to admit the principal to a level one behavioral health facility licensed by the department of health services if this authority is expressly stated in the mental health care power of attorney or health care power of attorney.

An agent is not subject to criminal or civil liability for decisions made in good faith and pursuant to a mental health care power of attorney or health care power of attorney.

Unless limited by the express authority in the document, a principal even if incapable, may revoke all or any part of the principal’s mental health care power of attorney by doing any of the following:

Making a written revocation of the mental health care power of attorney or a written statement to disqualify an agent.

Orally notifying the agent or a mental health care provider.

Making a new mental health care power of attorney.

Any other act that demonstrates a specific intent to revoke a mental health care power of attorney or disqualify an agent.

Unless a facility has instituted proceedings pursuant to §36-533, if a principal who is a patient in a mental health facility revokes a mental health care power of attorney and requests a discharge in writing, the facility shall discharge that person within twenty-four hours after it receives this request, excluding weekends and legal holidays. THE DISCHARGE REQUIREMENT PRESCRIBED IN THIS SECTION DOES NOT APPLY IF A MENTAL HEALTH CARE PROVIDER IS PROHIBITED FROM DISCHARGING THE PERSON UNDER FEDERAL LAW.

A person may use any writing that meets the requirements of §§36-3281 and 36-3282 to create a mental health care power of attorney. The statutory form is offered as a sample only and does not prevent a person from using other language or another form.
PREHOSPITAL MEDICAL CARE DIRECTIVES (§36-3251)

 

Notwithstanding any law or a health care directive to the contrary, a person may execute a prehospital medical care directive that, in the event of cardiac or respiratory arrest, directs the withholding of cardiopulmonary resuscitation by emergency medical system and hospital emergency department personnel. Authorization for the withholding of cardiopulmonary resuscitation does not include the withholding of other medical interventions, such as intravenous fluids, oxygen or other therapies deemed necessary to provide comfort care or to alleviate pain.

A prehospital medical care directive must be printed on an orange background and may be used in either letter or wallet size. The directive must be in the statutory form.
LIVING WILL (§§ 36-3261 and 36-3262)

 

An adult may prepare a written statement known as a living will to control the health care treatment decisions that can be made on that person’s behalf. The person may use the living will as part of or instead of a health care power of attorney or to disqualify a surrogate.

If the living will is not part of a health care power of attorney, the person shall verify his living will in the same manner as prescribed by §36-3221.

A person may write and use a living will without writing a health care power of attorney or may attach a living will to the person’s health care power of attorney. If a person has a health care power of attorney, the agent must make health care decisions that are consistent with the person’s known desires and that are medically reasonable and appropriate. A person can, but is not required to, state the person’s desires in a living will.

The statutory form is a sample only and does not prevent a person from using other language or another form.

REVISED ARIZONA ANATOMICAL GIFT ACT (§§ 36-841 through 36-850)

 

A person who is at least eighteen years of age may:

Make an anatomical gift for any of the purposes stated in §36-846(A).

Limit an anatomical gift to one or more of those purposes.

Refuse to make an anatomical gift.

A person may make an anatomical gift only by a document of gift signed by the donor. If the donor cannot sign, the document of gift must be signed by another person and by two witnesses who sign at the direction and in the presence of the donor and of each other and who state in the document that it has been signed in this manner.

An anatomical gift by will takes effect on the testator’s death, whether or not the will is probated. If after death the will is declared invalid for testamentary purposes, the validity of the anatomical gift is unaffected.

A donor may amend or revoke an anatomical gift not made by will only by:

A signed statement.

An oral statement made in the presence of two persons.

Any form of communication during a terminal illness or injury that is addressed to a physician or surgeon.

The delivery of a signed statement to a specified donee to whom a document of gift had been delivered.

The donor of an anatomical gift made by will may amend or revoke the gift in the manner provided for amendment or revocation of wills or as set out above.

The delivery of a document of gift during the donor’s lifetime is not required for the validity of an anatomical gift.

 


Inside Arizona Health Care Power of Attorney Law