Texas Advance Healthcare Directive Law

Power of Attorney and Health Care – General – Texas

A “directive” is an instruction to administer, withhold, or withdraw life sustaining treatment in the event of a terminal or irreversible condition.

A “qualified patient” is a patient with a terminal or irreversible condition that has been diagnosed and certified in writing by the attending physician.

Execution (§ 166.035)

The following persons may execute a directive on behalf of a qualified patient who is younger than 18 years of age: the patient’s spouse, if the spouse is an adult; the patient’s parents; or the patient’s legal guardian.

Requirements (§ 166.036)

A written directive executed is effective without regard to whether the document has been notarized. A physician, health care facility, or health care professional may not require that: a directive be notarized; or a person use a form provided by the physician, health care facility, or health care professional.

Patient Desire Supersedes Directive (§ 166.037)

The desire of a qualified patient, including a qualified patient younger than 18 years of age, supersedes the effect of a directive.

Duration of Directive (§ 166.041)

A directive is effective until it is revoked as prescribed by statute.

Revocation of Directive (§ 166.042)

A declarant may revoke a directive at any time without regard to the declarant’s mental state or competency. A directive may be revoked by: the declarant or someone in the declarant’s presence and at the declarant’s direction canceling, defacing, obliterating, burning, tearing, or otherwise destroying the directive; the declarant signing and dating a written revocation that expresses the declarant’s intent to revoke the directive; or the declarant orally stating the declarant’s intent to revoke the directive. A written revocation takes effect only when the declarant or a person acting on behalf of the declarant notifies the attending physician of its existence or mails the revocation to the attending physician. The attending physician or the physician’s designee must record in the patient’s medical record the time and date when the physician received notice of the written revocation and must enter the word “VOID” on each page of the copy of the directive in the patient’s medical record.

An oral revocation takes effect only when the declarant or a person acting on behalf of the declarant notifies the attending physician of the revocation. The attending physician or the physician’s designee must record in the patient’s medical record the time, date, and place of the revocation, and, if different, the time, date, and place that the physician received notice of the revocation. The attending physician or the physician’s designees must also enter the word “VOID” on each page of the copy of the directive in the patient’s medical record. Except as otherwise provided, a person is not civilly or criminally liable for failure to act on a revocation made under this section unless the person has actual knowledge of the revocation.

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Inside Texas Advance Healthcare Directive Law