An advance directive is a legal document that specifies the healthcare decisions that should be taken for a person in case he or she is not capable of making such decisions. It comes into force when someone no longer has the capacity to make healthcare-related decisions. Once the person regains the ability to make mental healthcare decisions, then the advance directive ceases to be operational.
The document has to include 1:
- Directions for treatment
- Name of nominated representative
Only major persons (those who have completed 18 years of age) can make this document. Please note that any decision taken by a person (when he has the ability to make such decisions) will override the advance directive2. However, if a person requires emergency treatment 3 then the directions in the advance directive need not be followed. For example, the advance directive does not apply in suicide cases.
To make the document, you should approach an NGO which works in this field or a lawyer, who will be able to help you out.0
- Section 5(1), the Mental Healthcare Act, 2017.
- Section 5(4), the Mental Healthcare Act, 2017.
- Section 9, the Mental Healthcare Act, 2017.