California legal/medical/ethical question: In advance of my going to the hospital to give birth within the next few weeks, I decided to download and fill out California's standard Advance Health Care Directive form, i.e. a living will (and to have my husband fill his out too, as long as we were at it). However, Google informs me via multiple sources that this form, even if signed and notarized, is
Some sources, possibly older ones, say that a "living will" and a "health care power of attorney" are (or were) two separate things under California law. However, the only actual form I have found online, the Advance Health Care Directive form from the California Hospital Assiciation
, is exactly the same as the one listed in the actual California Probate Code
, except more nicely formatted for printing, and while it is considered the former of the two categories, a "living will", the California Medical Association's very helpful FAQ
states that this Advance Health Care Directive Form now supersedes the old health care power of attorney. It's the
form to fill out for California residents. But if it's also considered a living will, then does the "not valid if pregnant" rule come into effect?
I have not found any explanation as to why a pregnant woman would be unable to declare her own health care preferences, especially since California law goes out of its way to mention that a woman's right to abortion can be neither compelled nor denied, regardless of what her health care directive says.
1) How can I declare my health care wishes in a legally binding manner prior to my giving birth?
2) The form is (or maybe was) considered invalid while pregnant? Seriously, WTF?