Bobbi Kristina Brown’s tragic death offers a number of poignant end-of-life lessons for parents, young adults, and seniors alike. First and foremost, health and legal experts say Brown’s death spotlights the need for establishing written advance medical directives as early as age 18. These include the designation of a healthcare proxy, a living will, and a “HIPAA Release,” clearing the way for a healthcare agent to communicate with providers about the care of a patient who is in a coma or otherwise incapacitated. Such planning is typically viewed as a concern for older Americans, but younger people — like Brown — can also find themselves unable to communicate their end-of-life wishes as a result of accidents, brain injuries, infections, or other illnesses.
Last week’s NewsMax article, titled “End-of-Life Lessons of Bobbi Kristina’s Tragic Death,” suggests that parents of college-bound freshman (18 and older) should think about having a healthcare designation, a living will, HIPPA release, and durable power of attorney prepared for the ‘new’ adult so that parents can act on behalf of their kids if the unforeseen occurs.
Bobbi Kristina was only 22 and the only child of the late Whitney Houston and Bobby Brown. She passed away after a very public six-month family fight over how to treat the comatose Brown, after she was found face-down in a bathtub in the Atlanta townhome she shared with her boyfriend Nick Gordon.
This story illustrates the difficulties families deal with when confronted with complex healthcare decisions. The article emphasizes the need to create advance medical directives to help family members of patients. These end-of-life instructions should be in a legal document, prepared by an estate planning attorney so that it satisfies the requirements of state law. The directives should include:
It’s no shock that end-of-life planning is a difficult topic to discuss. Just 26.3% of Americans have completed advance directives, according to a 2013 study. But as the Bobbi Kristina Brown case shows, it’s important and never too early to discuss this topic with spouses, family members, partners, adult children, and parents.
Reference: NewsMax (July 31, 2015)“End-of-Life Lessons of Bobbi Kristina’s Tragic Death”
I heard Cindy’s presentation at a Senior Luncheon at my church, and was very impressed. She helped my daughter and me understand many aspects of elder law. Josh has also been very helpful in my planning to enter an independent living situation . I have told many friends about them.
The very best elder law attorney and staff anyone could ever ask for! I have referred a number of clients to Cindy and she never disappoints. She is kind, caring, and extremely thorough in making sure everything is completed as it should be. I highly recommend Cindy for anyone needing lawyer services; she truly goes above and beyond for every client she helps and has had a huge impact in so many peoples’ lives. Thank you, Cindy and staff, for everything that you do- I’m so glad to know you!
Cindy and the Nelson Elder Care Law team are trustworthy and helpful. They are the experts in elder care law. At Leaf Cremation, we entrust our families to the care of the Nelson team when their services are needed.
Josh Nelson, and his staff, have been amazingly helpful to our family. The ins and outs of nursing homes, the rules and regulations that govern Medicare and Medicaid are daunting and the folks at Nelson Elder Care Law have been informative, responsive, and above all, empathetic. I cannot emphasize enough how their service has taken a weight off of our shoulders especially during a world pandemic that has targeted nursing homes across our country. I highly recommend retaining Josh and his firm!
I had a simple legal question to them that I needed answered and they very helpful in giving me the information I needed. I highly recommend them and will reach out to them if I need more advice or assistance. Thank you for taking your time to just answer a couple of questions I had!