A healthcare proxy is someone who makes medical decisions for you. You can set up a proxy who will use his or her power if you are unable to make your own medical decisions.
Anytime you give someone else the power to make decisions for you, you have to choose that person carefully. He or she could potentially have a lot of say in what happens with your life, and you need to know he or she has your best interests at heart.
The National Institute on Aging suggests that you start looking for someone who shares the same values, morals and views that you do. You want to pick a person who is most like you and will make decisions that you would make.
Your proxy does not have to be someone related to you. However, it should be someone close to you who you can trust and who you know well. You do not want someone who is unpredictable or whose views you do not clearly know. While many people choose a proxy who is a family member, you can choose a friend.
You should create your healthcare proxy with a few things in mind. First, you should choose an alternative proxy who can stand in if your proxy is unable to. This just helps to ensure whoever makes decisions for you will follow your wishes because you have chosen that person and it was not someone chosen by the court.
Second, make sure you clearly define the power the proxy has. You want to detail the decisions he or she can make. You should also put restrictions and guidelines in place to manage how the proxy exerts his or her power.