Lawmakers are poised to change the state’s advanced-directive laws which govern a person’s wishes if he or she is incapacitated or near death.
The House approved House Bill 1216, which would prevent hospitals and other health care facilities from removing life-sustaining services or nutrition without a court order, unless the person has a living will or designated guardian.
And the House approved HB 1217, which would allow advanced-directive forms, including those from other states, to be valid in New Hampshire.
HB 1216 was approved on a 206-118 vote, and HB 1217 on a 214-110 vote.
Directives include such things as hydration, nutrition or life-sustaining treatment such as ventilation or kidney dialysis.
Under current state law, such treatment may be withheld if the directive is included in a living will, or the person has a designated guardian or court order, or if it is a facility’s standard protocol.
House OK's Advance Directive Bills