Health and Welfare LPA
The full breadth of the Lasting Power of Attorney for Health and Welfare can be found in MCA Code of Practice. Amongst other things, it outlines the decisions that can be made on behalf of the donor at a time when he or she no longer has capacity.
The attorney acting under the Health and Welfare power would be able to make decisions on the following if the power was not restricted in any way:
- The day to day care of the donor which would include diet/nutrition and where to live.
- Who the donor can live with and who they can have contact with?
- Make decisions on medical treatment and to refuse medical examination.
- Community care provisions.
- Whether the donor should take part any social activities, education, training or leisure pursuits.
This list is by no means exhaustive but it gives an idea of the potential scope of the Health and Welfare LPA. As seen above if not restricted in any way, it gives the attorney a wide range of power to act for the donor. It may be advisable for the donor to discuss fully the implications with the family, GP and other professionals before deciding who to appoint.
A notable difference between the LPA for Property and Finance and that of the Health and Welfare is that with the Health and Welfare power, the attorney will only have authority to act when the donor lacks capacity.
Under this power, the donor has to select out of two options whether he would like for his attorney(s) to consent or refuse to life-sustaining treatment. This is the treatment from healthcare professionals to sustain his or her life. The alternative would be for the medical profession to make that decision e.g. whether or not to turn off a life-supporting machine. The in MCA Code of Practice does give guidance on this to donors. See Who can be an Attorney?
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